College is the first of its kind to win award

(left to right) Richard Peacock and Leah Ashby, both lecturers in Art & Design, Dr Sarah Gilligan, lecturer for Art & Design and the Colleges Artsmark project leader, Keith Bradley, Head of School for Art & Design, and Michael Thompson, lecturer in Art & Design.

(left to right) Richard Peacock and Leah Ashby, both lecturers in Art & Design, Dr Sarah Gilligan, lecturer for Art & Design and the Colleges Artsmark project leader, Keith Bradley, Head of School for Art & Design, and Michael Thompson, lecturer in Art & Design.

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College chiefs are celebrating after winning a prestigious arts award.

The Artsmark award was presented to the thriving Art & Design department at Hartlepool College of Further Education.

The award has previously only been awarded to schools that champion their artwork, but has been revised by the Arts Council for the 2015/16 academic year to include further education providers.

The college was one of only five in the country to be selected for the revamped pilot scheme, and had the honour of being the first to be awarded with the prestigious Artsmark honour.

Keith Bradley, head of school for art & design at the college, said: “Artsmark is an endorsement of our pursuit of excellence and recognition as a leading provider of creative education within further education in the North of England. We are proud to be a key member of the pilot development for such a prestigious award scheme and honoured to be the first college in the UK to be awarded Artsmark Centre status at FE level via the Arts Council.”

Dr Sarah Gilligan, lecturer in art & design and the college’s Artsmark project leader, added: “We are already benefiting from exciting collaborations within the creative sector as a result of the Artsmark (FE) Pilot, which has opened many doors to inspiring development opportunities.”

It comes after Radio 1 asked students to design event branding for the Ibiza Weekend music festival taking place in the summer.

They also worked on promotional material for the launch of the Mini 5-Door and creating work for Ruroc, who manufacture helmets for Formula 1 drivers and pit crew.