Irvine’s bandstand is to have a new home at St Mark’s Primary school following an exciting and closely fought competition.
St Mark's Primary School has walked away with the unusual prize of an original bandstand, which will be relocated from the Bridgegate to their school. The Rethinking Bandstand competition, which is part of Irvine Bay’s award-winning education programme, invited local schools to pitch their ideas for how they could make best use of the Irvine bandstand and where they would relocate it.
However, the three short-listed secondary schools are all winners too. Auchenharvie Academy, Greenwood Academy and Irvine Royal Academy have all been offered support which will allow them to improve the spaces around their school and in one case create an outside performance venue.
Reacting to the win, pupils at St Mark’s commented:
“We will use the bandstand for choir, outdoor learning, reading, art… and other stuff.”
“We were against three secondary schools, so we thought we had no chance of winning, because they were all bigger.”
“We just felt so excited that we’d won and that it was a real privilege as the others were all high schools.”
Find out more about the school's reaction to the win in our podcast.
Kirsty Innes, Marketing Manager at Irvine Bay, who organised the competition commented, “We were overwhelmed by the standard for the entries. When we visited, the energy, enthusiasm and motivation of pupils and staff at all four of the shortlisted schools was palpable! We wanted to find a way to reward that level of commitment and so we’ve put a lot of thought into how to recognise each of the schools.”
As overall winners St Mark’s secures the top prize of the bandstand. They will also be offered technical support to ensure the installation is safe and secure. The school will also receive a selection of planters that can be used to enhance the area around the bandstand. Irvine Bay will also work with the school to organise the official opening of the bandstand.
As a response to the outstanding standards in the competition, Irvine Bay has developed a package for each school which promotes regeneration and helps young people to realise the positive impact that they can have on the places where they live and work.
Irvine Royal Academy will receive support to improve the courtyard area which was proposed for siting the bandstand.
For Greenwood Academy, Irvine Bay will work with the school to explore how they can secure an outdoor performance area in their school grounds.
Auchenharvie Academy will receive support to transform their school grounds with the aim of reflecting outside the school the positive changes being made inside the school. The initial support would be access to a landscape architect who would work up a detailed scheme for the improvement.