COLOURFUL murals now brighten up the site of the demolished Prince of Wales pub in Widnes town centre.

Albert Square shopping centre commissioned Widnes artist Natalie McGahan to work with pupils to develop artwork around three themes.

These include famous people of Widnes past and present, Widnes Skyline – Lowry Style and three bridges including The Mersey Gateway.

An exhibition featuring the progress of the project is on display at a community gallery in unit 30 Albert Square.

Halton Clr Ron Hignett, board member for the physical environment, said: "Pupils have worked extremely hard. I am sure the people of Halton will enjoy the results.

"It is lovely to have public art in the heart of Widnes, where people can enjoy it while out doing their shopping or meeting friends.

"The exhibition is a great way for parents and other family members to come along and take a look at each stage of the project and how it has progressed.”

St Gerard's, All Saints, Fairfield, Cronton and Simms Cross, St Bede's, Farnworth and Riverside College took part.

The project was run as a competition by town centre landlords, New River Retail Ltd.

The Mayor of Halton, Clr Margaret Ratcliffe declared the winners as St Bede's and Farnworth for their joint effort.

Halton Council worked with Castlefield Gallery and New River Retail to convert two properties in Albert Square into community galleries.

This is being used to create project spaces to produce new work and engage audiences with ‘pop-up’ exhibitions.

Albert Square Shopping Centre manager, Kyla Ankers, said: " I am really looking forward to strengthening the partnership with HaltonCouncil and working on the next localised creative adventure."

New River Retail actively encourages community engagement and creative talent within its community.

Gallery space is available for talented artists young and old.

For more details, call the centre manager on 0161 707 3058.