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A 12 metre high wall of poetry has been created in the heart of Nottingham

A 12 metre high piece of poetry which aims to encourage people to take time out and reflect has been painted onto the side of a building at the heart of Nottingham Trent University’s (NTU) City campus.

NTU Poetry Wall
The 12-metre high piece of poetry was written by NTU staff member Claire Miller and was painted by NTU Alumna Lucinda Ireland

The painting was created as part of NTU’s ‘Curated & Created’ extra-curricular and public arts programme. Staff, students and the wider community were invited to submit pieces of poetry representing solace, inspiration and connection.

The winning poem was written by Claire Miller, a Web and Digital Content Officer at NTU. Entitled ‘Here & Now’, it was written on location at the Dryden Pocket garden, whilst she sat on one of the benches right next to the side of 50 Shakespeare Street where the painting is featured. She allowed this experience to help craft the final poem she submitted.

Claire said: “I’ve been writing poetry for a long time and absolutely fell in love with language and playing with language at university. I thought it would be an incredible experience to have one of my pieces of work published on a wall in the middle of the city. I’m delighted to have been chosen as the winner.”

The piece has been painted by NTU alumna Lucinda Ireland, who graduated from BA Hons Graphic Design in 2011. Lucinda is a graphic designer with a passion for typography, she exhibited at the ‘Since 1843: In the Making’ event in 2014 at NTU and then went on to exhibit at the London Graduate Design show.

Amy Bere, Director of Culture at Nottingham Trent University, said: “We’re inviting members of the university community and the wider community of Nottingham to come sit, reflect, have a moment of peace and celebrate the creativity and beauty all around them, even in a city environment and especially at NTU.”

The full poem can be found below:

"Here and Now"

Attention please!  Pause here a moment to read
and consciousness will tap you on the shoulder, ask you to
unmuffle your ears, wipe the pixels from your eyes
and be absorbed in the sounds of our city.

Breathe in life as it sings and thrives around you –
hear the chatter of starlings darting through paper bark trees
the humming of bumblebees, sipping at nectar tea
while the wind whistles through the leaves that whisper-dance
on this island of green

Listen to the water trickle and bubble,
the glass-clinks and chair-scrapes from nearby gardens,
elated waves of here-and-now laughter
and underneath, the lull of distant traffic,
like an ocean sighing, lapping at these streets
as you settle into the sonata of Nottingham.

Let your heartbeat fall in step with each passer-by.
They walk with an absence – life left on mute
each soul shrouded in a soundproof fog of worries
senses dulled by what-ifs and lingering memories.
If only they could take time to just sit down
to focus on what they hear right now
they would see things more clearly.

  • Notes for editors

    About Nottingham Trent University

    Nottingham Trent University (NTU) received the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education in 2021 for cultural heritage science research. It is the second time that NTU has been bestowed the honour of receiving a Queen’s Anniversary Prize for its research, the first being in 2015 for leading-edge research on the safety and security of global citizens.

    The Research Excellence Framework (2021) classed 83% of NTU’s research activity as either world-leading or internationally excellent. 86% of NTU’s research impact was assessed to be either world-leading or internationally excellent.

    NTU was awarded The Times and The Sunday Times Modern University of the Year 2023 and ranked second best university in the UK in the Uni Compare Top 100 rankings (2021/2022). It was awarded Outstanding Support for Students 2020 (Times Higher Education Awards), University of the Year 2019 (Guardian University Awards, UK Social Mobility Awards), Modern University of the Year 2018 (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide) and University of the Year 2017 (Times Higher Education Awards).

    NTU is the 5th largest UK institution by student numbers, with nearly 39,000 students and more than 4,400 staff located across five campuses. It has an international student population of 7,000 and an NTU community representing over 160 countries.

    Since 2000, NTU has invested £570 million in tools, technology, buildings and facilities.

    NTU is in the UK’s top 10 for number of applications and ranked first for accepted offers (2021 UCAS UG acceptance data). It is also among the UK’s top five recruiters of students from disadvantaged backgrounds and was the first UK university to sign the Social Mobility Pledge.

    NTU is ranked 2nd most sustainable university in the world in the 2022 UI Green Metric University World Rankings (out of more than 900 participating universities).

A 12 metre high wall of poetry has been created in the heart of Nottingham

Published on 4 May 2023
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