TransPennine Express has donated £10,000 equally between the Big Ideas By The Sea Festival and the Wilfred Owen windows through its Community Rail Partnership (CRP) Growth Fund.
Visitors to Scarborough station can now enjoy the fantastic artwork that honours war poet Wilfred Owen; this artwork is featured within the windows situated at the front of the station and towards the end of the platform.
The tribute to Wilfred Owen forms part of the Big Ideas By The Sea Festival, which is taking place in Scarborough between 16-24th July. TransPennine Express (TPE) has donated £10,000 towards the festival through its Community Rail Partnership (CRP) Growth Fund, which includes £5,000 going towards the window installation. The festival will bring speakers and performers from across the UK to discuss significant issues such as climate change, artificial intelligence, music, and history.
The windows at Scarborough station feature text and illustrations from five of Owen’s poems; these illustrations are in muted colours and can only be identified close up. From a distance, the windows appear bright, colourful and translucent. There is also artwork displayed which showcases portraits of Owen himself alongside his handwritten poems.
A series of six podcasts have also been created to accompany the window art installation and will be available for listeners on the Big Ideas By The Sea Festival website. The first podcast introduces Wilfred Owen’s history and was recorded on location at Scarborough station. Each of the other five podcasts focuses on a specific poem.
Graham Meiklejohn, Regional Development Manager for TransPennine Express, said, “The Wilfred Owen window installation marks a fantastic moment for Scarborough as it prepares to host the Big Ideas By The Sea Festival. The designs are impressive, and we would like to thank the team for their hard work and dedication towards this project.
Our Community Rail Partnership (CRP) Growth Fund helps enable projects or schemes to positively impact routes, including encouraging transfer between TPE services and those operated on CRP routes, such as the Esk Valley, Tyne Line, or the Yorkshire Coast. We are delighted to be able to help fund the inaugural Big Ideas By The Sea Festival.”
Kane Cunningham, Art Director and Big Ideas By The Sea Co-Director, said, “We are thrilled to be one of the winners of the CRP growth fund, with a proposal to focus on Wilfred Owen, who is widely regarded as Britain’s finest war poet. Owen’s father Tom worked for the railways, and in the early 1900s, the Owen family travelled to Scarborough on holiday. Owen also arrived by train when he was an Army Officer stationed in the town during World War One. Each window design is inspired by one of the many Owen poems written in Scarborough, and each expresses something personal about his months spent in this wonderful seaside town.”
Paul Elsam, Artist and Wilfred Owen scholar, added, “Wilfred Owen had a bit of a secret life in Scarborough, and it’s been fun working with the station windows to plant clues, then unpick them in podcasts. It’s especially exciting to share this with the public, whether they’re fans of Owen’s poetry or not.”