Community-led artwork showcases ‘Your Uttoxeter’

Local artists have worked with North Staffordshire Community Rail Partnership (CRP) to brighten up the walls of Uttoxeter Railway Station.

The concrete wall at the back of Platform 1 at Uttoxeter Station was last painted with an impressive mural in 2011 but has since been badly damaged by water ingress.

To embark upon the new mural project, funding was agreed with East Midlands Railway, Cross Country, Uttoxeter Town Council, Uttoxeter Station Adopters, Community Rail Network and Uttoxeter Racecourse.

A local artist was sought via Facebook and, in the end, two were selected: Maisie Baker Design from Leeds (who grew up in Uttoxeter) and We are Cullä from Stoke-on-Trent. At 35m long, the wall perfectly accommodates two separate but joined murals.

The public were consulted on the content of the ‘Your Uttoxeter’ mural by the distribution of special postcards and posters around the town, inviting people to suggest their favourite Uttoxeter locations. The Uttoxeter Station Adopters were key partners in this activity – they suggested the best places and groups to consult, as well as distributing the posters and postcards. Special post-boxes were left in four public locations for collection, and 75 postcard responses were received in total.

The practical work began on Platform 1 in August 2022. Both artists worked together to make the two sections of the mural flow, using a similar palette of colours. Maisie Baker was able to incorporate all of the suggestions into her mural – a black and white wave featuring Uttoxeter buildings and events in detail, bordered by brightly coloured flower shapes at the top and bottom. The second mural from We are Cullä features the Crewe to Derby Line, with each station illustrated alongside a nearby visitor attraction.

Claire Sandys, Community Rail Officer for the North Staffs CRP, said: “We are delighted that the new mural at Uttoxeter Station is finished. Thank you to the people of Uttoxeter for all your ideas – you clearly think very highly of your lovely hometown.

“Uttoxeter Station now has a bright and interesting wall that will help to promote the resources and community groups of this friendly and historic rural town, as well as raising the profile of the other stations along the line and local places of interest that can be accessed by rail.

“We are very pleased with both murals, and we hope you like them too.”