Ilkley Lido inspired artwork wins regional art award


Pupils from Ghyll Royd School are celebrating five pieces of artwork winning first prize at the Independent School Association (ISA) Regional Art Competition, including a ceramic celebration of a busy Ilkley Lido.


The ISA runs a number of annual competitions for its 535 member schools including Essay, Drama and Art, to give pupils the opportunity to showcase their artistic talents.


The winners will now be entered into the ISA National Final which will be judged in November. Ghyll Royd’s Specialist Art Teacher Miss Keeley Smith entered individual and group pieces from each year group, resulting in five first prizes.


Joshua in Form 4 drew a detailed dragon piece in his Vikings topic. At Ghyll Royd, the learning challenge curriculum is a study of a geographical or historical topic explored in dedicated lessons and also in the children’s weekly Art and Music lessons to achieve a deeper level of learning. Joshua spent hours in the art room working on the individual scales, before finalising his design in pen, earning his first place in the ISA Art Competition. This is the second ISA Art award for Joshua, whose textiles sea crown won first prize in the ISA National Competition in 2019.


Beau in Form 6 won in the textiles category this year for her Scrap Monster, created in her learning challenge study of World War II. Her class learnt about how children in World War II made their own toys using items found around the house. She designed, hand-stitched and stuffed her monster to create the winning piece.


11-year old Georgie created an intricate and colourful chameleon in the school’s dedicated after school clay club. The piece won first prize in the Upper Key Stage 2 3D individual category.


Of the two winning group pieces, Ghyll Royd pupils created their own row of Victorian shops based on Harry Potter’s Diagon Alley. ‘Vertic Alley’ featured wand makers, sweet shops and cauldron sellers made from clay, which were fired and glazed in the school’s kiln. The prized pottery will be carefully delivered to Coventry for the National finals next month.


The final first prize piece was created by Forms 2 and 3. The children worked together on a pottery pool filled with children splashing in the water and floating in rubber rings, surrounded by smiling sunbathers. The piece was inspired by the Ilkley Lido, a favourite Summer spot for many local families.


Art Teacher Miss Keeley Smith, proudly beamed: “Well done to all the children who have received first prize in the regional competition this year! The children come into my art room and are free to express themselves. I think the formula to our children’s success in the arts is through our fixed weekly arts timetable and the confidence that regular opportunity to create and share work brings our pupils. I’ve had children come in who didn’t think they were good at art, who now love the subject and produce beautiful work.”


Mr David Martin, Head Teacher at Ghyll Royd School and Pre-School commented, “What a tremendous result for the children, we are thrilled. The artwork has been on display at school and has finally had its chance to be shared with the public thanks to the ISA Art Competition. As you can see, the children at Ghyll Royd access a wide range of art from painting to textiles, mosaics, digital art and pottery.


“I would like to congratulate the children and also thank Miss Smith for encouraging our pupil’s artistic abilities.”


Ghyll Royd recently achieved Silver Artsmark status, the creative quality standard for schools, accredited by Arts Council England. It supports schools to develop and celebrate arts education across the whole curriculum.


The ISA National Art Finals will take place in November 2021. To find out more about the ISA, visit the Independent Schools Association website.