Banbury Academy’s ‘school of rock’

Banbury Academy students show the reluts of their stone carving workshop (courtesy Darren Bedding Photography) NNL-161210-153926001

Banbury Academy students show the reluts of their stone carving workshop (courtesy Darren Bedding Photography) NNL-161210-153926001

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Students at Banbury Academy were treated to a day-long stone carving workshop with renowned stone mason Michael Disley.

The session, organised by The Crown Estates and Cherwell District Council, is the fifth of its kind and follows The Crown Estate’s commissioning of a public art installation to be hosted at Banbury Gateway Shopping Park.

Taking part were 30 GCSE students who were given the opportunity to carve stone for the first time, creating designs in large slabs of sandstone using techniques that date back to the dawn of time.

Also in attendance were council members Tony Ilott and Barry Wood.

Cllr Ilott said: “Giving young people the opportunity to work with Michael is a great way to involve the local community and the workshop was a great success with everyone creating their own stone carving masterpieces.”

Michael Disley said: “We had a really enjoyable day at Banbury Academy last Friday, when 30 students were all given the opportunity to carve stone for the first time.

“The carvers are looking forward to seeing the Banbury Archway, which will be installed at Banbury Gateway Shopping Park. The archway, along with two granite benches, will have designs celebrating local wildlife carved in to the surface, and will be unveiled in January 2017.”