Hundreds of shoppers and office workers stopped to take a look at a film made by a group of young students focusing on the “greening” of Swindon’s town centre when the five-minute documentary, called Outside In, had its premier on Swindon’s open air Big Screen in Wharf Green.
Members of the ten-strong team of pupils from Greendown Community School, Grange Park, West Swindon were delighted with the response from the public at the first airing of the film, which was attended by Swindon South MP Anne Snelgrove.
The students gained the chance to work with a professional film-maker after winning a competition to come up with ideas for a documentary on the theme of Sustainable Swindon.
The project was funded by The Brunel shopping centre, in partnership with Swindon Borough Council’s Create Studios and the BBC in Swindon, which manages the Big Screen.
Anne Snelgrove MP said “I thoroughly enjoyed Greendown School's 'Outside In' film and congratulate the students on a very professional production. Plants and trees in Swindon's town centre make a real difference to how we feel about our environment and can help attract new visitors to our shops in these difficult times. The film will help me publicise the good things about Swindon and I hope the students will come to the House of Commons to present their work to a wider Audience.”
Tony Wilkes, manager of The Brunel shopping centre, said:
“The standard of entries was very high anyway, but the final film that the Greendown students produced just blew us all away. From researchers to presenters, from cameramen to animators, they were all totally professional and highly motivated. They looked very carefully at why greenery lifts people’s moods in urban places and presented it in this beautiful documentary. Their teachers – not to mention their parents – must be very proud of them indeed, and all of us at The Brunel feel honoured to be associated with them.”
Some quotes from the students who took part:
Jess Harmer – “A once in a lifetime opportunity, I feel so proud thinking our film has been on the Big Screen seen by everyone!”
Anna Waddington – “It made me realise what a beautiful town Swindon could become.”
Faye Rogers – “The project helped me gain confidence speaking to people I don’t know – partly interviewing members of the public, but also working with peers I’ve never spoken to before.”
Keegan Lane – “I learnt more about the environment.”
Harry Marvell – “I learnt valuable skills.”
Dan Jordan – “It has opened up doors to new opportunities and experiences.”
Keisha Williams – “I learnt more about how the local environment affects everybody’s lives.”
Joe Barnard – “It has been a great opportunity to widen my skills using professional recording equipment.”
Jamie Vernon – “I learnt so much about new technology that now I want to make another film!”