The Duke of Gloucester formally launched a new art trail in Burgess Hill on Monday (October 2) to celebrate the lives of local inhabitants.
In front of dozens of special guests, local artists and town councillors, HRH Prince Richard unveiled the art work at the Burgess Hill burial ground, in Jane Murray Way, Burgess Hill, on Monday afternoon.
The Green Circle art trail surrounds the town incorporating large open spaces and has spokes leading into the town centre.
It is a celebration of the locality and achievements of some of the town’s most noteworthy inhabitants.
Before opening the new trail, HRH the Duke of Gloucester said: “Thank you very much for inviting me today.
“It is a great pleasure to come here and join in this venture which brings so many things together.
“You have decided that Burgess Hill is an interesting place and that you should be able to walk around it taking in the art and celebrating those who have worked so hard to make the town what it is today. “You thought ‘right let’s make a trail to celebrate the local heroes of Burgess Hill’ and here it is.”
The new art trail was made possible after Burgess Hill Town Council was notified by Mid Sussex District Council that £76,000 was available from section 106 funds for an art project.
A strategy for the use of these funds was developed and five items of historical or environmental significance were identified.
This included a sculpture of Emily Temple – a Burgess Hill benefactress who left St John’s Park and the park centre to the residents of the town – which was unveiled by the Duke on Monday to the delight of the invited guests.
Along the eight-mile Green Circle, there is further art work depicting John Charles Bee-Mason, a pioneer of early film making who made two films about bees; John Saxby, who formed Saxby and Farmer which became the major contractor responsible for building signal boxes as we know them today; a bluebird and wildlife habitat.
Mayor of Burgess Hill Jacqui Landriani added: “Thank you all for turning out today for the opening of the new art trail celebrating the work, lives and characters of Burgess Hill.”
The project was developed by Burgess Hill Town Council, in partnership with Mid Sussex District Council, West Sussex County Council and Friends of Burgess Hill Green Circle Network.