‘Dog hotel’ mosaic launch at Hackney dog pound

The 'dog hotel' mosaic made by Hackney Mosaic Project

The 'dog hotel' mosaic made by Hackney Mosaic Project - Credit: Archant

A 10-year old boy’s ‘dog hotel’ design has been turned into a stunning mosaic as a finishing touch for the new kennels inhabited by Hackney’s stray and abandoned dogs.

Youngsters from Mandeville Primary School at the launch of the mosaic

Youngsters from Mandeville Primary School at the launch of the mosaic - Credit: Archant

Youngsters from nearby Mandeville Primary School took part in a competition to draw a design for the side of the kennels in Millfields Road, Lower Clapton.

Gerald Lawrence’s image of a “dog hotel” with dogs playing in a park, was picked out as the winner, to be transformed by Hackney Mosaic Project, commissioned by Hackney Council.

The project was set up by mosaicist Tessa Hunkin who guides the work of a team of dedicated volunteers, some of whom are referred by Lifeline, an organisation helping people in recovery from issues with drugs and alcohol, while others are recovering from mental health problems.

Tessa said: “When I saw Gerry’s design I fell in love with it. Initially we thought it would be a painting, but we soon realised that it would work even better as a mosaic.

“The great thing about projects like this is that everyone can make a valuable and individual contribution – it’s a creative, sociable way for people to work together.”

Some of the artists used their own dogs as inspiration like Gabi, from the Pembury Estate, who created mosaics of her two dogs Harry and Sugar, and added them to the finished piece.

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Speaking at the unveiling of the mosaic on Tuesday, Cllr Feryal Demirci, cabinet member for neighbourhoods, said: “We take our responsibility to look after stray dogs very seriously. These kennels are undoubtedly some of the best in London.

“They help us give neglected dogs the best possible chance of finding a permanent home. I am delighted that local school kids have been able to get involved. Hopefully they go on to become the next generation of responsible dog owners.”

Each of the 10 kennels has also been given a name, chosen by pupils from Mandeville.

Hackney Council collects about 250-300 stray and abandoned dogs every year and houses them in ten state of the art kennels.

Hackney Mosaic Project has created other artworks across the borough, in Hackney Downs, Shepherdess Walk and the Levy Memorial Ground, and welcomes the opportunity to create new works or private commissions.

For more information see www.hackney-mosaic.co.uk.