Young people in Armley create 'Memory Bank Mural'

Young people in Armley have helped create a colourful new mural featuring their favourite  places and memories of growing up in the area.

Friday, 16th April 2021, 6:00 am
Updated Friday, 16th April 2021, 11:39 am

More than 30 people have been involved in painting the striking new 'Memory Bank Mural' on a wall in Armley Leisure Centre car park.

The mural features Gotts Park and Armley Moor along with images of some of the children's pets.

Paintings of speech bubbles signify the variety of different languages spoken in the Armley community.

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Pictured at front are artists, Sabrina Rodi, Natasha Joseph and Franscesca Rodi from 'We Belong Here' with volunteers from Leeds Youth Services with the 'Memory Bank Mural' Photo: Steve Riding

An image of a piano has been included to mark a lockdown singalong project involving neighbours living on Pasture View.

Leeds Youth Services commissioned the 'Memory Bank Mural' on a wall in the leisure centre car park on Carr Crofts.

The youth service worked with young artists from a local community arts group called 'We Belong Here' for the project, which was funded by the Inner West Community Committee.

We Belong Here previously organised the Armley community arts project The Bunting Festival when more than 200 flags created by residents were displayed in the area.

Mural at Armley Leisure Centre...Artists from 'We Belong Here' with volunteers from Leeds Youth Services with the 'Memory Bank Mural'. Volunteer Mick Khanenok at work. Photo: Steve Riding

Natasha Joseph. creative director at We Belong Here, said: "As an organisation we believe there is no such thing as 'I can't draw'.

"Everyone can draw and everyone can paint - the biggest obstacle is making people feel like they can because that makes them realise they want to.

"Mural projects are a great way to do this because you can see such immense and beautiful progress in a public space over a short period of time and I think that can be a really fulfilling experience for the young people as well as us."

Stephen Harper, team leader for Leeds City Council's youth service, said: “The voices of young people have been rarely heard during the Covid-19 crisis and as we move out of lockdown projects like this help remind us of their amazing resilience and positivity.

Mural at Armley Leisure Centre. Artists from 'We Belong Here' with volunteers from Leeds Youth Services with the 'Memory Bank Mural'. Leeds Youth Services volunteer Haukar Houssien is pictured.

"Young people have shown that when listened to and given the opportunity they have the ability to fully engage and inspire their communities.”

Mural at Armley Leisure Centre. Artists from We Belong Here with volunteers from Leeds Youth Services with the 'Memory Bank Mural' Photo: Steve Riding