Pupils’ mural has pride of place in Convenor’s office

SBSR Peebles High mural Councillor Graham Garvie with art teacher, Mary Tweedie and pupils Niamh Shaw, Grace Blissitt and Rachael Gemmell
SBSR Peebles High mural Councillor Graham Garvie with art teacher, Mary Tweedie and pupils Niamh Shaw, Grace Blissitt and Rachael Gemmell
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A mural created by a group of Peebles High School students has been given pride of place in the office of Scottish Borders Council’s Convener, Councillor Graham Garvie at Council headquarters in Newtown St Boswells.

Border Life is the result of a collaborative project between 12 students working within the school’s art and design department, thoughtfully designed to represent the rich heritage of the Borders and its people.

The mural embraces some of the area’s most recognisable and ancient buildings such as Traquair House, Melrose Abbey and Abbotsford while images of the ride-outs stretching across the bottom reflect the region’s distinctive local culture. The exciting return of the rail link to Edinburgh is also depicted.

The artwork was created using mixed media, such as acrylic paint, inks, photo transfers and tartan textiles. The vibrant colours used were chosen to signify the ever changing hues of the Borders’ rolling landscape through the seasons.

Pupils involved in the project were Niamh Shaw, Rosie Donnelly, Lauren Watson, Anita Halliwell, Grace Blissitt, Ruaridh Brunton, Maisie Farrer, Rachael Gemmell, Daragh Ramage, Martha O’Donnell, Kirsten Rodwell and Lily Carvalho. They were supported by art teacher, Mary Tweedie.

Niamh Shaw said: “It was quite a journey to get it to this point but it is lovely to see it on display in such an important setting. It was started by another group of pupils so in the beginning we only had some line drawings to give us an idea of what they were trying to achieve. However, as more people became involved and brought their ideas and skills to the project, we started to get a better sense of what it was going to look like and realised it could actually turn out to be something quite special. Seeing it here today makes all our hard work and commitment worth it.”

The mural was presented to Councillor Garvie at an unveiling ceremony on 13 May. He said: “When I first moved into this office, I knew it needed some artwork on the walls. I began with a more traditional picture that I obtained from the Tweeddale Museum but really wanted something innovative and original that would showcase this wonderful region of Scotland that is the Scottish Borders. I approached Peebles High as my local high school but know that any of our other eight senior schools would have done an equally impressive job.

“What has been unveiled has exceeded all my expectations and everyone who has contributed should be extremely proud of the vision, creativity and hard work that has gone in making this outstanding mural, very aptly named Border Life. I have no doubt that it will be greatly admired by the many and varied visitors who come to this office and is certainly a legacy which I will be delighted to pass on to my successors in due course.”