In this section

Art & Design students transform a Watford subway into a modern art gallery

Our Art & Design students were tasked with submitting paintings or photographs with relevance to air quality and reducing pollution to help spread awareness about Clean Air Day. These pictures were hung in the recently refurbished St Albans Road subway on Clean Air Day, Thursday 16 June. This was a fantastic opportunity for our students and they to got to see how they transformed a subway into a modern art gallery.













Hertfordshire County Council undertook a works programme of cleaning, painting, vegetation cutback, surfacing and lighting improvements to this subway.

The star of the refurbishment package is however the new art display. Twenty-four frames have been fitted on the walls of the subway to display the beautiful and creative paintings, drawings and photographs from the college students. The display features a wide range of images, many with relevance to air quality and reducing pollution, such as nature, sport and transportation.

The subway provides the space for the students to display their work in a public place and for local people to enjoy the new and exciting art on their doorstep. The subway is located about a 5 minute walk away from the college. If you would like to visit the subway, please see the map below for an accurate location of the subway:















Phil Bibby, Executive Member for Highways and Transport, Hertfordshire County Council said: “This project is part of Hertfordshire County Council subway refurbishment programme to encourage active travel, reduce car use and improve the environment we live in and links in the Local Transport Plan.

This is the second subway in Watford to be transformed, the Vicarage Road subway was refurbished with a Watford Football Club Mural earlier this year.”

Hertfordshire County Councils Chairman Cllr Annie Brewster was delighted to meet some of the artists and their lecturers at the event.  She said: “This is such a brilliant idea to showcase the skill of these outstanding students whilst supporting a truly inspired community project. Numerous users of the subway were keen to share their delight with it as they passed by. Congratulations to everyone involved.

Working with Watford Borough Council to identify opportunities to improve walking and cycling routes and involve the local community is the way forward for a cleaner, greener and healthier Hertfordshire."

Elected Mayor of Watford Peter Taylor said: "I am delighted that Watford Council, working with West Herts College and the County Council, was able to help make this happen. There's no doubt it has helped brighten up the area and I'm sure the art will be enjoyed by those travelling through the subway. Providing attractive places to walk encourages more active travel, protects the environment and helps reduce traffic congestion.”

Brett Clarke, Head of School – Art and Design, West Herts College said: “We are incredibly proud to have had the opportunity of working with Hertfordshire County Council on this community project.

“Not only has it been an enriching experience for our students to share the creative work they produce to a wider audience, it has given them an insight into the importance of community projects and the role artists can play in the regeneration process. This has been a huge learning experience for the students and the start of a fantastic working relationship we hope to build upon.”

If you have a passion for Art & Design, our courses are perfect for you - find out more by clicking here.