Students’ Signs Take Pride of Place in Villages

May 17, 2016

EDITED Thorp Academy 2 v1

Students see their signs installed

Visitors to two Gateshead villages will receive a special welcome thanks to new road signs designed by local students.

Young engineers from Thorp Academy in Ryton teamed up with Tyneside firm Responsive Engineering to develop their own unique creations that prove their pride in where they live.

After designing the signs in school, the students went along to the Armstrong Works, Newcastle, where they saw their plans take shape on the water cutting machines.

The signs have been made out of Corten the same material used to make the Angel of the North and welcome visitors as they enter Crawcrook and Greenside in west Gateshead.

The project was the idea of Our Villages – a community interest organisation run by volunteers to conserve public spaces in Crawcrook and Greenside and to encourage residents to protect the beauty of where they live.

Our Villages secured Big Lottery funding to bring their idea to life before approaching Responsive Engineering, part of North East family firm Reece Group, where Simon Worrall and Peter Jones were happy to help with the manufacturing of the products.

Nick Worboys, of Our Villages, said: “The signs look absolutely fantastic and we are so pleased that young people in the area are getting involved and showing their pride in their villages.

“They were absolutely buzzing when they went to the factory and were able to actually see the signs being made.

“The feedback we are receiving from people is very positive.”

A visit to Armstrong Works allowed the students to see their signs being manufactured

A visit to Armstrong Works allowed the students to see their signs being manufactured

Sam Statt, faculty leader of design at Thorp Academy, said: “I think for the students to see their designs realised and all their work finally becoming a physical sign was brilliant. They were so excited.

“The tour of the factory was fascinating and the students and teachers were in awe of the diversity of products and projects happening on their doorstep. The students have worked so hard from the initial brief and research stage. They have embraced every part of the project and are excited about the response of the communities involved now the signs are put in place.”

Simon Worrall, business development manager at Responsive Engineering, added: “The students’ designs reflect the character and history of their home villages. It is always inspiring to see the work of a new generation of potential engineers and exciting to think what they will achieve in the future.”