Jeremy Turner

Portfolio: The Three Post Bench

The Gyosei Art Trail, Milton Keynes

In 2012 the Great Linford Parish Council proposed that an Art Trail be created alongside the Grand Union Canal in Milton Keynes. The funding for it was to come from contributions [S106 money] made to the project by the developers of the demolished Gyosei International School. Artists were invited to show examples of their work at the Parish Council offices and then visitors to the exhibition were invited to select whose work they would like to see on each of the proposed sites on the Trail. I was one of the artists selected.Then followed a long process of gaining planning permission from the numerous landowners and stakeholders along the route of the Trail. With all permissions granted, the funding became available and in March 2016, artists were able to start work. Finally, on Sunday, 17th July 2016, the Art Trail was formally opened in the Gyosei Gardens, at the new housing development on the former Gyosei School site.

By March 2022 The Three Post Bench was looking weatherworn and shabby. The paint on the canal facing side of the Bench had been almost washed off by winter rain and summer sun. The side facing the Grand Union Canal Broadwalk was green with algae and spattered with bird excrement. So it was agreed that the maintenance budget be used for its thorough clean and repaint. A variety of water resistant and waterproof acrylic paints was used, finished with exterior acrylic varnish. The unpainted bare wood areas were treated with dressings of Tung oil, the first coating stained with added artists Burnt Umber oil colour.

The renovation work was completed with the last coat of varnish applied on Wednesday 10th August 2022.