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Kids tile in style to brighten up Cullen beach toilets

By Alan Beresford

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CULLEN'S beach toilets have become a work of art thanks to the efforts of kids from the local primary school.

The Friends of Cullen Toilets, the volunteer group who run the beach loos plus the ones in the Millennium Square in the town, had been left some money as a bequest from a local woman.

It was to be put to good use, as Julie-Ann Drake from the group explained.

"The three of us who do most of the organising for the group decided it would be nice to have some of artwork on the outside of the toilets to brighten the building up.

"We talked about different ideas and we thought that instead of getting someone in to create an artwork we'd get the kids at Cullen primary to each create a part of the picture and then we'd put it all together.

"Every kid at the school took part from P1 to P7, so we've got over 100 tiles. The school's headteacher, Carene Hay, said that the P1s went first and were so good they set a very high bar for everybody else.

"The brief was for each kid to paint something iconic in Cullen on their tile, so we've got the likes of the Three Kings, the viaducts and an oyster catcher.

"We're very grateful to the school for taking part and creating some amazing art."

Mrs Hay said the school was delighted to have the opportunity to take part.

She continued: "As a school, were delighted to be part of a community project and look forward to many more opportunities for partnership.

"I was delighted with the result as every child took their time to plan and paint their tile before the summer holidays. The bar was raised with the great standard produced from Primary 1 right through to 7, adding Cullen sparkle to the process.

"The tiles have drawn lots of attention with their colourful and inviting artwork – I am very proud of everyone in our school! We Learn and Play the Cullen Way, each and every day."

The children and their parents were all invited down to see the finished article on Saturday, October 23. As a reward for their creativity, the youngsters and their folks were treated to a cuppa and a tray bake at the beach.

As with many other community groups, the pandemic and its restrictions have limited what the Friends of Cullen Toilets have been able to do on the fund-raising front. However, the future remains bright as society begins to open up.

Ms Drake continued: "It's been going really well thanks to some very generous donations.

"We've done a lot of work on the beach toilets with the money, including installing a tap for washing feet, new urinals and sinks as well as painting the outside of the building. The windowsills have all been painted in bright colours.

"Next up are the toilets in the square and we'll be giving them an overhaul.

"We've got a great group of volunteers who open the toilets and clean them at the weekends."

Ms Drake added that due to the enduring popularity of the beach area during the winter months, including burger and coffee vans pitching up there, the beach toilets would remain open at the weekends.

The toilets in the square remain open every day.

been busy

Friends of Cullen Toilets have recently completed an art project with the Cullen Primary School pupils. A Cullen woman left the toilets some money as a bequest. We used her money to buy tiles and grout and approached the primary school to paint the tiles with images of Cullen. We sealed the tiles and stuck them to the wall of the beach toilets, down by the golf club as a gallery.

We are hoping to share this project in the local paper. We have done a lot of work to the toilets this year with donations from beach goers. We will be finished by the end of the tatie holidays. We have provisionally suggested a date to the teachers, children and parents to come down to the beach for a cuppa and a tray bake and to see the tiles on Saturday afternoon 23rd October at 2pm. Do you have a photographer available to come and cover our event please?

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