Graffiti artist's NHS tribute in Stevenage underpass

NHS tribute mural in underpass next to Lister Hospital in Stevenage

Artist Mark Tanti with the East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust's deputy director of infection prevention and control Lorraine Williams and chief nurse Rachael Corser, and Councillor Phil Bibby - Credit: Courtesy of Hertfordshire County Council

An underpass in need of refurbishment next to Lister Hospital in Stevenage has been transformed into a work of art by a professional graffiti and mural artist, in tribute to NHS staff.

The mural on Coreys Mill Lane has been created by Stevenage artist Mark Tanti - owner of graffiti art service Demograffix - and funded by Hertfordshire County Council. It features an ambulance, air ambulance, rapid response vehicle, Lister Hospital and NHS staff.

The council says it is a public tribute to "the hard-working staff at Lister Hospital, and to all NHS teams that have worked tirelessly during the pandemic", adding that the subway had been "an unpleasant place to walk through and needed refurbishment to make it a more comfortable and attractive environment to encourage people to use it".

The mural is particularly poignant for Mark, after he contracted COVID-19 in December and says he was so ill he thought he was going to die. "It's definitely one of the most colourful ones I have worked on," he said.

Pony Lane underpass, next to Sainsbury's on Stevenage's Hitchin Road, has also been transformed by Mark, with a horse-themed mural. The underpass, connecting the town and countryside via a bridleway, also features a pegasus crossing, designed as a safe pedestrian and horse crossing area.

NHS tribute mural in an underpass on Coreys Mill Lane in Stevenage

Artist Mark Tanti, Riding for the Disabled Association's Val Chivers, Councillor Phil Bibby and Riding for the Disabled Association's Ian Shepherd at the Pony Lane mural in Stevenage - Credit: Courtesy of Hertfordshire County Council

Councillor Phil Bibby, the county council's executive member for highways and transport, said: “I’m delighted these murals have now been completed and can be enjoyed by everyone living and working in Stevenage. Mark has done a fantastic job bringing both areas to life.

“Our aim is to offer all residents a cleaner, greener, healthier Hertfordshire. Providing attractive places to walk encourages more active travel, protects the environment and helps reduce traffic congestion.”

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Rachael Corser, chief nurse at the East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust, which runs Lister, said: “The support we have received from our local communities has been incredibly important to our staff, and has kept them going through the most challenging of times as we strive to provide the best care we can.

“Thank you for this mural. It’s really brightened up the space and will be a real boost to staff.”