Pupils’ winning murals mark Humber Bridge’s 40th anniversary

Pupils are celebrating after their murals won a competition to decorate the Humber Bridge to mark its 40th anniversary.

School children across the region were asked to create murals that reflect the theme “what the bridge means to me”. The winning murals have been safely displayed on the west footpath at the centre point of the bridge, where Yorkshire meets Lincolnshire.

Chief Operating Officer Andrew Arundel said: “The theme – ‘what the bridge means to me’ – was very broad and we saw some really imaginative and creative entries. It was really exciting to go through them all.

“The Humber Bridge has connected Yorkshire and Lincolnshire for forty years now, making living and working in both much easier. These murals absolutely celebrate that connection, as well as adding an amazing dash of colour to the western walkway.

“On behalf of the Humber Bridge Board and all our staff, I want to say a big thank you to all the pupils and teachers who worked so hard on their entries, as well as the sponsors who have helped getting the murals printed and installed.”

The mural competition was split into four categories, with winners from Key Stages 1, 2, 3 and 4. Staff at the Humber Bridge, as well as members of the Bridge Board, picked the winners.

Pupils at Penhurst Primary School won both the Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 categories. Pupils at Hessle High won both Key Stages 3 and 4. Their murals are now displayed at the halfway point on the western walkway.

All the other entries have been compiled into collages representing the north and south bank schools. Both collages will be displayed at their respective ends of the walkway.

The competition was sponsored by Pepperells Solicitors, KCOM, D3 Office Group and Airco, ensuring the murals and collages could be printed and mounted on the western walkway for everyone to enjoy.

Ben Pepperell, CEO of Pepperells Solicitors, which sponsored Key Stage 2, said: “Pepperells are delighted to be able to sponsor this exciting project, celebrating the 40th anniversary of one of the region’s most iconic landmarks. The bridge has stood for over forty years and has connected businesses, families, loved ones and friends. Pepperells’ roots originated in the Humber region and it’s great to celebrate the landmark which connects so many of our offices together.

“It has been brilliant to see all the creativity the children have captured and to listen to the stories of what the bridge means to them. With offices in Hull, Beverley, Willerby, Scunthorpe and Grimsby, our team and clients are looking forward to seeing the mural as they pass over the Humber Bridge.”

Dale Raneberg, chief executive officer of KCOM, which sponsored Key Stage 4, said: “We’re excited to be part of this fantastic project celebrating 40 years of the Humber Bridge.

“As a company that has recently expanded our full fibre network into North Lincolnshire across the bridge, we know the importance of connecting communities on the north and south banks of the Humber – a job this amazing piece of engineering has been doing successfully for four decades.

“The pupils at Hessle High School have done some fantastic work creating their mural design and we can’t wait to see it in position on the bridge for everyone to enjoy.”

Martin Shaw, managing director of D3 Office Group, which sponsored Key Stage 3, said: “It’s been great to support the Humber Bridge Board’s school mural competition.

“It’s amazing to think that the Humber Bridge is celebrating its 40th year and brilliant to see so many tremendous mural entries from schools across the region.”

Tim Davison, commercial director of Airco, which sponsored Key Stage 1, said: “The mural project really caught our eye as Airco have offices in both Immingham and Hull, so the bridge provides a crucial link for us in providing our services to hospitals, schools and industry across the region.

“Supporting this ‘creativity project’ was also important to us as we employ more than 180 people from the region and we leverage their creative skills to provide innovative solutions for our many clients.”

Construction on the bridge started in 1972, with cars first crossing on 24th June 1981 and on 17th July 1981 Her Majesty the Queen performed the formal opening ceremony.

When it opened, it was the world’s longest single-span suspension bridge – a record it held for 16 years. It is the UK’s longest single-span suspension bridge and now the eighth longest in the world.

In 2017 the Humber Bridge was given Grade 1 listed status by Historic England, making it the longest listed structure in the UK.