A new city centre street decorated with a giant mural was officially opened today.
Savoy Street was declared open to the public as passers-by marvelled at the gigantic piece of artwork, which is spread across three buildings.
The mural was painted on businesses in Savoy Street – a new road linking Belgrave Gate with Mansfield Street which will become an important bus route, allowing Church Gate and Haymarket in the city centre to be pedestrianised.
The artwork, by city group Graffwerk, was inspired by Leicester’s lost art deco cinemas and in particular The Savoy Theatre that used to stand on Belgrave Gate.
The 1930s building, later known as the ABC, was demolished in 2007.
The artists are also took inspiration from Floral Hall and The Palace Theatre, which also stood on Belgrave Gate in the past.
Izzy Hoskins from Graffwerk said: “We’re very excited to deliver this mural, which will celebrate the cinematic heritage of the site.
“With a project of this scale, there’s a lot of preparation work to do before you can start painting.”
Work started on the mural on Monday, September 21, and was finished for the grand opening today.
Leicester City Council‘s deputy city mayor Cllr Adam Clarke said: “Many local people will remember visiting the Savoy cinema in the 1940s and 50s, so I’m sure this mural will bring back fond memories of nights out in Leicester and firmly connect the new road with the city’s past.
“Graffwerk have got a great track record in working with us to produce stunning artworks – and this latest project is set to transform what could have been a rather featureless new road into an attractive route that celebrates the area’s history and heritage.”
The £50,000 budget for the mural was funded as part of the £4 million scheme to construct Savoy Street and upgrade both Mansfield Street and Sandacre Street.
Get our Leicestershire newsletter – it’s simple!
Get LeicestershireLive news updates straight to your inbox – click here to sign up to our daily newsletter.
Alternatively, add your email address in sign-up bar at the top of this page. It’s that easy!
The construction of Savoy Street and the related improvements to Mansfield Street and Sandacre Street are supported by the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership Limited (LLEP).