The latest artworks to adorn Handforth Station were officially opened when 15 young people from the local SK9 youth group, passengers, funders, Friend of Handforth Station members and other supporters attending the launch on Thursday, 30th May.
Two new ornamental entrance arches now greet passengers as they arrive at the two platforms designed by artist Christine Wilcox-Baker, who worked closely with the local SK9 Youth Group to incorporate their ideas into the metalwork sculptures.
Youth group members also helped paint the sculptures at the end of the manufacturing process whilst members of the local community and rail users added their ideas at a drop-in day at the station.
The designs pull together all the ideas with one arch representing SK9's suggestion that the station is part of Handforth's DNA. This brightly painted arch uses the DNA structure as a backdrop with extended bars to suggest the rail tracks. The other arch gives us past, present and future of rail travel with steam, electricity and satellite communication represented.
Andrew Backhouse, Chair of the Friends of Handforth Station said "We have a long tradition of commissioning art for the station and want it to be a welcoming place.
"We are especially pleased that the community has been so involved with this latest work and it was great to have so many of the young people of Handforth at the launch of the artwork they helped create. We hope rail users also enjoy seeing it, as a foretaste for what we may be able to do once the lifts are installed."
Christine Wilcox-Baker said "My work is based on storytelling and so the ideas from the young people of Handforth and the rail users were integral to the creative process. I hope the experience has also inspired them to think about the role of art in public spaces."
Sadie, one of the young people who unveiled the artwork and helped paint it said "It was really good to be involved in this - visiting real blacksmiths and working with them."