Finishing touches to £4m centre

Artist Paul Stone
Artist Paul Stone
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A GIANT black and white jellyfish is the latest addition to Blackpool’s new youth hub.

The edgy design is one of a variety of images painted on to the walls of the futuristic building by urban artists.

The artwork, including fluttering birds and colourful butterflies, marks the completion of Myplace, the £4m Youth Hub on St Annes Road, South Shore.

When finished, the Big Lottery funded Myplace complex will include performance and media space, a recording studio, cafe and shop and wildlife and flower area.

The centre will also offer advice services to help young people get back into education or employment and provide support on issues such as teen pregnancy and drug and alcohol abuse.

Artist Paul Stone, 40, who works under the name ‘My Dog Sighs’ from Portsmouth, was tasked with painting the café and social space on the ground floor of the building.

He said: “I had the idea for a jelly fish about seven years ago and it has devolved in a haphazard way and is now a jelly fish which found a staple gun and stapled itself to its friends – it sounds odd.”

Artists from across the country submitted ideas to feature on the hub’s walls but only four were selected to take part by youngsters from Blackpool Council’s Young People Advisory Group.

Sarah Yates, 24, an artist from Sheffield, said she was delighted to be involved as her family live in Blackpool.

She said: “I was really interested in painting things young people would enjoy.”

Sarah and Paul were joined by artists Chris Butcher and David Parkinson.

Myplace, designed by architect Matt Hill, is part of the Government’s Aiming High strategy to help young people develop new skills and raise aspirations.

Coun Amy Cross, Blackpool Council’s cabinet member for younger people, said: “The young people who have been involved should be proud.”