Newark residents to create a wall of art in the town centre

Posted on: Tuesday, June 25, 2024

The Community Art Gallery @ 32 is a new art initiative that invites Newark residents of all ages to draw what they love most about their town and have their artwork featured on part of the construction wall around 32 Stodman Street, where new homes and retail units are being built.

This is a chance for local people who live or work in the town to express their creativity and celebrate the beauty and diversity of Newark by drawing what they love about the area. The project is led by Newark and Sherwood District Council alongside Newark Town Board, who are transforming the former M&S building into an exciting hub made up of 29 high-quality homes and retail units in the heart of Newark.

Residents in Newark can use forms that are being handed out to local schools, community groups, Housing with Care Scheme and picked up from Beanblock café in Newark to make their drawing. The deadline to submit the forms with the artwork is Friday 26 July.

The forms can be delivered in person to the District Council offices at Castle House, BeanBlock café, or via the participating schools and community groups. Alternatively, residents can contact and arrange for someone to collect their artwork.

There will also be a ceremony later in the summer where the winning artists will be invited to reveal their artwork and receive recognition for their contribution to the community art gallery.

Matt Lamb, Director of Planning and Growth at Newark and Sherwood District Council, said: "We are delighted to launch the Community Art Gallery @ 32, which is a wonderful way to engage the residents in the transformation of this key site in the town centre. We look forward to seeing the colourful and inspiring artwork that will brighten up the construction wall and reflect the spirit of our town.

“Transforming the former M&S building is an exciting project and we are committed to showing that initiatives like this can help to develop town centres for the better.  Without the Council’s intervention, this prominent building could have fallen into disrepair and while we tried hard to find tenants for it, no interest for such a large unit was forthcoming.  By splitting it up as we are, we are turning a building that could have been abandoned into a thriving and active area where living, working and shopping come together.

Stepnell, a well-established complete construction partner with over 150 years’ heritage in the industry, is undertaking the initial phase and mobilisation of the 32 Stodman Street construction work.

Tom Sewell, Regional Director at Stepnell, said: “Our work on this landmark project as complete construction partner is continually centred on effective engagement with the community, an area that we are passionate about within our projects both in the East Midlands and across the country.

“The community art gallery brings the local community together, through an incredibly rewarding and exciting artistic initiative. Through activity such as this, our goal remains to support the local area with creating job opportunities, investing locally and our ongoing commitment to educating the younger generation.”

The first phase of work is likely to take place until late summer 2024 with the construction taking place soon after. Completion is expected to be in 2026.

This competition is only for those living or working in Newark and anyone at any age can enter!

For more information, please visit or contact