The benches in a park in Yate have had new life breathed into them after a local artist got creative with the skateboard inspired seating.

Having only recently realised that the benches at the Witches Hat Play Area and skate park were shaped like skateboards, Artist Kate Richardson was inspired to find a creative way to “jazz” them up to inspire people to get back outside.

Kate approached Yate Town Council with her vision and was delighted to get the go ahead to paint the benches.

“I guess we don’t always take much notice of the things around us like we should," said Kate.

"Having more of an awareness I think is important, especially when it comes to mental health disorders, disabilities, domestic abuse and bullying, they aren’t always easy to see at first and so we need to talk more about them, and create more awareness.

"I think lockdown life may have magnified these difficulties for some families and it may have been very lonely and stressful for some.

"I hope the benches inspire others to be creative. It’s a great way to reduce stress and depression and has definitely helped me throughout my life when faced with difficult times.”

The Mayor and Chair of Yate Town Council, Councillor Karl Tomasin, thanked Kate for her work on the benches at the play area.

Councillor Tomasin added: “It was lovely to be able to update our existing park benches in this way and also be able to recognise how we can support mental health in the community in a variety of ways. Many thanks to the artist who approached us with her idea.

"I'm thankful to our councillors and staff who were able to organise this so quickly. I hope our community can enjoy spending time sitting and chatting on the benches. They are certainty a good conversation starting point.”

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