Timeline designed to inspire Steyning students

Robin Hursthouse working on the timeline at Steyning Grammar School
Robin Hursthouse working on the timeline at Steyning Grammar School

A unique timeline designed to inspire students is being drawn up by local artist Robin Hursthouse.

The timeline, linking the English and history departments at Steyning Grammar School, has been designed to illustrate important dates and events.

Using spray paints and stencils made from his own original drawings, Robin is bringing the corridor that connects the departments to life with a visual display of memorable dates, such as the printing of the first English book, the birth of Shakespeare and the Reichstags fire.

Students will be able to interact with the timeline, adding dates and events as part of their research and study.

“This is a really exciting project and will become a striking and original part of the school,” said Robin, whose wife is a member of the English department at Steyning Grammar.

“She mentioned that the English and history departments were discussing a joint timeline and although, as a freelance illustrator I am accustomed to working on smaller projects, it sounded like a really interesting idea.

“I offered my services and my tender was accepted.”

Robin took some inspiration from graffiti artists and decided that spray paints and his own hand cut stencils would be an effective method for scaling-up the images and transferring them to the wall.

“It has been very interesting returning to a school environment as neither a student nor a teacher,” he added. “Whilst working, I have enjoyed the sounds of classrooms within earshot as the school day progresses. It has been good fun to hear some of the comments of passers-by.

“I hope that everyone will enjoy my work on the timeline as they journey along the corridor and that it will fuel inspiration and desire in students to gain greater knowledge of English and history and inform their work in many other fields.

Tom Brixey, head of humanities said the departments were “dynamic and forward thinking”.

“As we encourage our students to be positive, independent and engaged, it is important that we create opportunities for them to feel motivated to learn,” he added.

“The timeline is an example of how we can inspire and show, not tell.”