Young people have been showing their artistic skills in a project linking local churches with the community in Shildon, County Durham. Saint John’s Church in the Anglican Diocese of Durham brought in Stanley-based artist Graham Cleland to work on a ten-week graffiti art project with local young people, based at the Methodist church hall in Shildon. The results of their work were exhibited at Shildon Civic Hall on Tuesday July 15 between 3-8pm. St John’s Vicar The Revd David Tomlinson said: “The project has allowed us to work with young people who might not normally have the opportunity to engage their creative side. “It has allowed them to show how naturally creative they are and we have been able to help them channel that creativity in a positive direction.” Artist Graham Cleland, who is a Christian, said: “It is good to see a church involved directly with the community. “The young people have shown plenty of energy and enthusiasm and I am impressed with their artistic ability.” The work is part of Shildon Alive, a Church-led project to improve community life in Shildon, including links with schools and local young people. Shildon Alive recently awarded a grant of £2,500 to create a sensory garden to a local secondary school, Sunnydale Community College. Shildon Alive works to improve the health, confidence and skills of more than 2,000 local people. Including through gardening and work experience.