Brent Geese mosaic unveiled at Mount Stewart

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Latest update 20.06.2014 15:33

Over the past nine months, more than 150 school children from the Ards area have participated in the design and creation of a new mosaic that has been unveiled at Mount Stewart.

Pupils from St Mary’s Primary School, Portaferry; Ballyvester Primary School, Donaghadee; St Finian’s Primary School, Newtownards; West Winds Primary School, Newtownards; St.Mary’s Primary School Kircubbin and Millisle Primary School all took part in workshops on the migration of Brent Geese. Led by local artists Sally Houston and Laureen McGill, the schoolchildren were inspired to design the feature mosaic, which measures an impressive 12ft x 6ft and contains more than 16,000 mosaic pieces.

The project was the result of collaboration between the Bombardier Aerospace (NI) Foundation, Arts and Business NI and the National Trust. Bombardier supported the project through its award-winning educational outreach, The Flight Experience, which uses the theme of flight to promote STEM subjects. The Ards workshops focused on the migration of Brent Geese to Strangford Lough, encouraging local children to illustrate what they had learned through art.

‘We are delighted to support this project through our educational programme,’ said Ken Brundle, Chairman, Bombardier Aerospace (NI) Foundation. ‘The participating schoolchildren should be very proud of their contribution to this magnificent mosaic. We are particularly pleased that the theme of flight has inspired their creativity. STEM provides all sorts of opportunities for discovery and invention both inside and outside the classroom.’

Brona Whittaker of Arts & Business NI said: ‘This project has been successful in bringing together local schools, volunteers and visitors, culminating in a unique Brent Geese Mosaic. This is a superb practical visual experience in teaching visitors new and old about the life of the Brent Geese and all the birds that can be identified from within the Lookout facility at Mount Stewart. It was also a great art, business partnership in involving Bombardier Aerospace staff with this project from beginning to end.’

Rachel Hart events Manager at Mount Stewart said: ‘We are delighted to unveil such a beautiful mosaic to welcome visitors to Mount Stewart and are very grateful to both Bombardier Aerospace and Arts and Business NI for supporting this collaboration, without whom this would not have been possible. We would also like to thank all the school pupils who took part and got so much enjoyment out of it. Sally and Laureen have done a fantastic job pulling all the workshops together and creating our Brent Geese Mosaic.’

The mosaic is on view at The Lookout, Mount Stewart’s Educational Bird-Watching Facility. Check the website for opening times and drop in to admire the mosaic.