A new project in Halewood explores the connections between the forest and the community as part of Knowsley’s legacy as the Liverpool City Region Borough of Culture and every town and village telling its story.
‘Following the Roots’ produced by collaborative and social arts agency Heart of Glass sees artist Frances Disley work with the local community to create a trail of sculptural artworks which will weave their way through Halewood Forest in the Spring.
The project has been made possible thanks to National Lottery Players, with funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
Frances will pair personal and shared stories from the community with tree species found in the forest, to represent the coexistence of people and place. These stories will be gathered from schools, conservation groups, walking groups and others that regularly use the Halewood Environment Centre, located in Halewood Park.
Over the next few months Frances will hold a series of workshops in order to create the new artwork for Halewood inspired by local knowledge and memories.
The project was officially launched on 19 December with a local school choir and members of the community gathering in the forest for a special tree ceremony to mark the winter solstice.
Artist Frances Disley said: “The forest is a place that enriches and supports the community, it’s a place to meet, gather and share stories. The artworks that we create will tell the human tales of Halewood intertwined with the wisdom of the trees – bringing to life the unique stories of the area and exploring the special relationship between people and nature.”
Cllr Shelley Powell, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Communities said: “Halewood Forest is at the very heart of this community. Year-round people turn to the space, for leisure, family time, health, fitness, and even solitude and reflection. This project will capture those feelings and experiences and turn them into something magical that the whole community can enjoy.
If you would like to be part of this unique project, a series of free community workshops will take place every Friday from 10 February to 10 March between 11am and 12.30pm at Halewood Environment Centre.
These sessions for adults who live or work in Halewood will include drawing, painting, photography and sculpture, with a focus on a different part of the woodland each week. You can drop in or book in advance here: Heart of Glass | Following the Roots: Forest Art Club
Halewood Environment Centre is located at Okell Drive, Halewood, L26 7XB