Historic findings inspire new village artworks

New artwork for Wickhurst Green SUS-171026-155616001
New artwork for Wickhurst Green SUS-171026-155616001

Archaeological findings on the site of a new 1,000-home development on the edge of Horsham have inspired some new public artworks.

Designs from renowned artists Will Nash and Tim Ward have been selected by Horsham District Council and Broadbridge Heath Parish Council and will be on display at Wickhurst Green.

They will add to other public artworks in the Horsham area such as Piries Donkey and Cart in Piries Place, the swans in Swan Walk shopping centre, the Horsham heritage sun dial in The Forum, the Southwater Iguanadon, the Horsham Light Tree at the entrance to Horsham Park and The West Sussex County Times printing press and pen information board in the Carfax.

The Wickhurst Green artworks were commissioned and funded by developers Countryside and it is hoped they will become iconic landmarks.

The artists came up with their creations after working with pupils from Shelley Primary and Tanbridge House schools , along with the local community and inspiration from village historian Jonathan England.

Artist Will Nash has designed a series of sculptures made from locally sourced stone. One work entitled ‘Tipped Discs’ takes inspiration from the patterns of the prehistoric post-holes that were revealed on the site by archaeologists.

A series of stones will be patterned with images reflecting themes from the workshops, and a second series will have smaller images such as paw prints, representing the idea of remnants of a long extinct species, or a faded photograph.

The sculptural stones act as markers through Wickhurst Green, providing informal resting points.

Meanwhile, artist Tim Ward’s design for artwork at the future neighbourhood centre aims to provide a key focal point and gathering location to the front of the building within the public square.

‘The Bridges’ forms a gateway into the new centre, a contemporary form, which holds images of the past within the inner surfaces. The piece emphasises the crossing of the threshold, as one of the main themes of the commission.

Countryside strategic land managing director Andrew Carrington said: “Public art plays an important role in helping to establish the unique character of a place and enriching the environment.

“We also wanted the works of art to reflect something of the spirit of this area. Will and Tim are two highly talented artists and it has been an exciting process to see their artworks start to take shape, in concept and now, in reality.”