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Traveler Wagon goes on the road

Technicians from Pendleton Together’s repairs team helped put the finishing touches to a traditional gypsy wagon as part of Young Roots exhibition 'Traveller Wagon Project - Bringing Heritage Alive!'

The National Lottery Heritage funded project was organised by Salford City Council’s children’s services.

The 12 feet long (3.6 metre) ‘vardo’ took two years to complete and was built by young travellers and non-travellers from Salford who joined together with a local traveller craftsman to learn the traditional skills involved in wagon making. 

More than 20 young people from a range of backgrounds built and decorated the wagon with traditional furnishings and painting, working during art classes in school and after school and at weekends. They gained Duke of Edinburgh awards and volunteering accreditation for their
work on the wagon which cost £50,000 to build.

The project also taught them about the culture, traditions and nomadic lifestyle of Gypsy and Irish travellers and enabled them to explore the impact and importance of culture and heritage on self-esteem and identity.

Painters and decorators from Pendleton Together put the finishing touches to the wagon before it was exhibited at Salford Museum and Art Gallery. Now it is set to embark on a tour of schools, libraries and community events.

Kirsty Bickerstaffe, Property Manager at Pendleton Together, said: “When the council needed some specialist trade skills to finish the wagon, we were delighted to step in.

“We were grateful to be part of such a fantastic project and can’t wait to see the wagon out on tour, improving awareness and understanding of cultural differences and commonalities and how we can all live harmoniously together.”

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