We Love Orton!

Why Orton?

We’ve been working in Orton since May 2019. In that time, the Peterborough Presents team have worked with young people from the area through Orton Art Club around the Herlington centre and also commissioned wellbeing projects like Barefoot Walking at Nene Park Trust which is in Orton.  

After Covid and the lockdowns, Keely our community producer is getting to know the area again and finding out what the area needs after coming through a difficult two years. She has attended coffee mornings, events and wanders around the area.  

So far people have told us that they love how friendly people are in the area and they are lots of nice people doing things to make their communities a better place to be. People also love the green spaces and getting involved in make areas greener. They also love that they have some very inclusive schools in the area that are used by the whole city.  

We’ll be starting to run more arts projects in Orton from Spring 2022, including the installation of a mural in the Herlington centre and a bigger project in the Autumn of 2022. 

Creative Young People

There are lots of young creative talent in Orton who love coming together to use their creativity to create positive change. In 2019 Peterborough Presents with a local panel, commissioned artist Kaitlin Ferguson who grew up in the area to deliver a new project for young people. That is when Orton Art Club was created.

Over late 2020 and into early 2021, Kaitlin and Orton Art Club worked together through weekly online workshops to design a mural. OAC took part in sessions on typography, zine making and stencils. The final design celebrates what Orton Art Club members like about Orton, with some words to bring people hope.

The mural will be painted in the Herlington centre area in Spring 2022 and there will be a big celebration event to mark its completion.  

Green Spaces and Nature

Orton is one of the greenest places in Peterborough, with its many trees along the parkways, ancient woodlands, to little green spaces on estates to the gem that is Nene Park. Otherwise known as Ferry Meadows, manmade in the 1970’s but with much older history dating back to the Romans, this huge estate stretches into Orton Meadows and Orton Mere. Nene Park has up to a million visitors a year and is walkable from lots of Orton households.

In 2019, artist Sandra Keating led a set of barefoot walks at Nene Park with families & adults. They helped people to experience the park in a different way and also introduced them to the many benefits of ‘grounding’. This prompted lots of conversations, play and new practices for the participants. After the lockdown, Sandra led another residency in the park. She examined how nature helped people through 2020 and also led more barefoot walks. This residency resulted in a mini-exhibition of images, text and also a film that documented that week and its main themes were resilience, the need for nature and connections to others.  

Watch the Barefoot Walking video by clicking the button below.

Orton Names

This is the personal favourite of community producer Keely Mills, who just loves the different and often very creative names for all the different parts that make up the whole of the Orton’s. Keely thinks these names could inspire artists, writers or creatives to make up magical worlds!

These are all the names in alphabetical order: Orton Brimbles, Orton Goldhay, Orton Longueville, Orton Malborne, Orton Northgate, Orton Southgate, Orton Waterville & Orton Wistow. What a list!

Family and Community Spirit

There are lots family focused organisations in Orton and they benefit families in lots of ways from play sessions, creches to fun events, also providing welcoming and supportive groups, helping parents to raise their families with expert, comforting helping hands. Orton has some of the most inclusive schools in Peterborough too.  But during Covid lockdowns they were not able to function in the same way. In 2021, through research and conversations with partners. It was clear that new parents were being majorly affected, with mums experiencing high rates of isolation, poor mental health and other social factors. Peterborough Presents teamed up with Murmuration Arts to try and find creative ways to support new parents. Friends from CPSL Mind were on hand to offer advice and support to any mums that might be struggling during the pandemic. 

Find out more about Lullaby for Peterborough by clicking the button below.

What’s Going On?

Find out more about what’s happening in Orton!