What is Percent for Art?
Our Percent for Art team comprises of four arts officers who are based in our Community Investment Team and work across all areas of Bolton. Our arts officers work with residents, community groups, partners and other community stakeholders to develop socially engaged arts projects that help to improve our communities and benefit customers.
We commission appropriate artists or arts organisations, to work with the local community, and we manage the project from start to finish.
The Percent for Art service actively encourages individuals and community groups to get involved in schemes that can offer creative solutions to neighbourhood issues.
Ideas for arts projects can come from our neighbourhood teams and they will focus on specific neighbourhood priorities or be developed through conversations with community groups, partner organisations or other community stakeholders. Sometimes local arts projects are developed through wider Greater Manchester, regional or national networks or funding.
Our service also offers advice and guidance to our partners with regard to developing arts projects involving other social housing customers across Bolton. We have also been commissioned by partners to project manage a number of community arts and public / environmental art projects in Bolton.
Projects can be in any medium including visual arts, performance, music, crafts, digital art and film. They can take the form of arts based consultation, skills and confidence building projects, arts in health & wellbeing work, festivals and celebratory arts, as well as streetscaping and environmental arts projects designed to enhance the physical environment.
2015 Teenagers transform crime hotspot with "Banksy of Bolton"
A once tired-looking subway in Bolton has been given a bright and colourful makeover by students from Little Lever School, as part of a national campaign to use creativity to help tackle crime.
Artwork designed by the year 10 art pupils has transformed Rose Hill Subway and was officially unveiled by the Mayor of Bolton, Councillor Carole Swarbrick, and Councillor Sherrington in January 2016.
The project developed out of a national campaign run by the University of Salford’s Youth Design Against Crime (YDAC) Solution Centre and was led by Bolton at Home, Bolton Council, and local artist Pete Marsh.
Young people across Bolton were asked to identify areas they felt were crime hotspots which, with creative and environmental improvements, could be made to look nicer and therefore more likely to stay crime free.
A competition was held and entrants presented their case in front of a panel consisting of Cllr Sherrington, a representation from Greater Manchester Police, and the late Gill Hughes MBE who was the council’s community safety manager.
Pupils from Little Lever School identified Rose Hill Subway, running under St Peter's Way, and put forward a concept to make it look more friendly and colourful using artwork, which was selected by the panel as the winning idea.
The children then worked with Pete Marsh to create and install the mural which now covers the subway walls.
Prior to the artwork being mounted the area was prepared by participants of the Community Payback programme, who cleaned debris and litter around the subway to make it welcoming.
Rodney Adams, Arts Officer for our Percent for Art service, said: “We’ve given the young people real ownership of the subway, a walking route that’s a key part of their area and every day commute to school.
“As well as being a fantastic regeneration project, it challenged them to be creative and address crime issues and their finished product exceeded all expectations. There’s so much value in encouraging young people to get involved with things that affect the town and the hope is that it will create a lasting sense of community pride, reducing crime along the way.”
The Mayor, who also unveiled a commemorative plaque dedicated to Gill Hughes, described the art as: "Like the Banksy of Bolton, only better."
YDAC engages young people in design-led crime prevention, developed by the Design Against Crime Solution Centre and national young people’s charity, Catch 22.
Pictured are The Mayor of Bolton, Councillor Carole Swarbrick, and pupils from Little Lever School.