Brief – For Local Artists To Design Artwork And Paint New Dickensian Themed Street Furniture For Rochester – Deadline 31st August 2015

Creative Opportunities


Artist/Maker for bespoke Dickens Book Benches


Medway has an ambition to become known as Dickens Country; similar to Shakespeare’s County and with that in mind we wish to develop our brand of Dickens throughout the area.


Medway Council are looking to commission a Medway based artist to design a series of Book Benches with a Dickens theme, which will be placed in Rochester High Street, and surrounding area.


Ideally, following planning consent and permission from the owners we would look to place the first three at some of these points:

St Mary Meadows

Eastgate Gardens

The Vines


At the r/o the VIC

Each book bench is:

H: 920 x L1450 x W700                                  Weight – 36kg


The Book Benches are manufactured using a mixture of Class 2 fire retardant laminating resin and chopped roving fibreglass over an initial brushed-on layer of polyester gel coat. Each sculpture is finished with a primer and is ready to paint.


Finish will need to be hard wearing, weather proof and if possible graffiti proof.


Applications will need to take into account that Rochester is a conservation area and the design will need to be in keeping with the area.


The design for each bench should look unique and could be from a different Dickens novel or theme.  Visitors and community alike will then be able to have their picture taken on the books and they will bring some of the dickens stories to life as well as being more visible to visitors giving the dickens country a more visible presence in the area.



–          31st August briefs submitted

–          4th September Design chosen

–          7th September Planning application submitted

–          16th October planning consent decision

–          7th November installation of benches



The artist will be paid a fee of £3,000 for the commission to include sourcing and supplying all materials and any necessary hire charges for work space.


How to apply:

  • Provide a covering letter outlining your relevant previous experience and suitability for the commission, together with visuals/design ideas/sketches, and an outline plan for completing the work, including timescales and basic costings for the three benches.  Please also indicate where you will be completing the work (please note the benches will need to be painted off-site and will then be moved to the location where they are to be installed)


Submission will be by email to by 31st August 2015

Any further information required or for an informal chat please contact Lindsey.Horton


Applications will be judged on:

·         The relevance of the artist’s previous work and the potential quality of the commissioned work

  • The quality of the information / material supplied
  • How closely related to the brief the design is


book benches book benches2 Book-Bench-150

Exact locations have not yet been decided, but this would be discussed with the artist appointed to work.

To express your interest in this commission please contact Lindsey Horton – or on 01634 338255 

It would be beneficial to decide and quote your hourly/daily rate in the initial contact. If you need help in deciding your hourly rate please contact myself, Natasha Steer, on or refer to this resource on the a-n website if you are a member

I am also willing to support artists in project management (i.e. insurance, risk assessments, collaborations) and provide free advice for projects such as these. I want to see more local creatives involved in creating functional public art for public spaces, so please feel free to ask for that support! 

By Natasha Steer

3 thoughts on “Brief – For Local Artists To Design Artwork And Paint New Dickensian Themed Street Furniture For Rochester – Deadline 31st August 2015

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s