Emmaus Hampshire companion uses upcycling skills to weld new public sculpture

An ex-homeless companion of Emmaus Hampshire has helped to create a public sculpture at the newly opened Handlebar Café with local artist, Nadine Collinson.

The companion, Frank, a bricklayer by trade, was selected by Nadine to assist with her project after she heard about his skilled upcycling of furniture for the Emmaus shop in Winchester. Frank welded the skeleton of the bikes while Nadine worked around him. They created the sculpture in Nadine’s purpose-built studio in her garden. Local students added their contribution by painting the piece.

Nadine states: “I’m all about inclusion. I think it is important to get a variety of people involved in my projects, which is why I wanted to work with Emmaus for the sculpture.”

Frank found the experience really rewarding, saying: “It was a great opportunity to be let go from my routine and go on an excursion to the studio”. As a self-entitled “hands-on person”, the project enabled Frank to use his skills in a creative way, while contributing to the local community. He was pleased by the outcome, noting, “Nadine knows what she wants. It’s hard work and I’m glad it’s exactly what she wanted.”

The location of the café on the old railway track inspired the sculpture, which depicts a family with their friends. “Those who use South Downs Way are all individuals, each with their own skills, ambitions and stories to tell,” says Nadine, “They enjoy the beautiful pathways, people of all ages and from all walks of life, able bodied and otherwise”.

The sculpture can be seen at the Handlebar Café, St Catherine's Hill, Garnier Road car park, Winchester, SO23 9PA. Emmaus Hampshire’s Winchester store is located at Bar End Road, Winchester, SO23 9BN.


Picture caption: Sculptor Nadine Collinson and Emmaus Hampshire companion Frank who collaborated to create 'Handlebar People' at the Handlebar Cafe, Winchester.