History brought to life in stunning mosaic project

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Towns in Chronicle country are having their stories set in stone - literally.

Work has now started on an ambitious mosaic trail for Sandy, Potton and Biggleswade,

Workshops started in schools in January and residents of Aragon Housing and members of the Biggleswade History Society have also been helping mosaic artist Oliver Budd.

The first phase is now complete and includes scenes from Roman Times in Sandy and Saxon to Medieval in Biggleswade. For Potton there is a round mosaic depicting the Market Rights, Fire, Brewery and Four Manors. Mosaic panels will be going up in the three towns in a few week’s time.

JD Wetherspoon have included one of the mosaic panels in their rebuilding of The Crown pub in Biggleswade. It is being placed in the yard and illustrates Samuel Pepys’ visit to Biggleswade and the Great Fire of 1785 which started in the yard and was responsible for burning down a third of the town. Members of the Biggleswade History Society worked on the main figure and the final mosaic tile was put in place by Nora Balfe (who with her husband was landlady of The Crown from 1962-1985)

There are 11 more mosaic panels to go up between October and February 2018, and organisers are hoping more locals will get involved.

During the summer, there will be a series of public workshops in each of the three towns which offers you the chance to get involved. The workshops are free, there is no upper age limit and no experience is needed. Learn an ancient craft, make your mark on your town and leave a legacy for future generations.

The summer workshops are for residents of all three towns and will run Mondays-Wednesdays for four weeks from 24 July to 16 August 9.30-12.30 and 1–4pm at: Biggleswade Library, Chestnut Avenue on Monday (afternoons only), Potton Town Council Offices on Tuesdays (mornings and afternoons), Sandy Town Council Offices on Wednesdays (mornings and afternoons). To register, call: Biggleswade Library tel: 0300 300 6835, Sandy Town Council tel: 01767 681491 Potton Town Council tel: 01767 260086

This is part of an inclusive community project made available by Central Bedfordshire Council as part of the £4million Market Town Regeneration Fund, and managed by Sandy Town Council. For further information see www.storyinstone.org.uk