Portland Sculpture and Quarry Trust is appealing for people to vote for its bid to win a grant from the Big Lottery People’s Millions programme.
The trust’s small project with ‘the potential to have a huge impact’ has been filmed ready for transmission on ITV West Country between 6pm and 6.30pm tonight when viewers will be given a number for telephone votes.
If successful, the trust will be able to transform the former Drill Hall, a rundown building in the centre of Portland, replacing the broken roof, widening doorways, installing ramps and equipment to create an arts workshop for the whole community to use and enjoy.
The workspace will include an outdoor carving terrace for creative and sustainable use of waste stone from the adjoining quarry. The Living Quarry will be going head to head with Plymouth Sea Cadets in this region and it is expected winners will be announced the following day.
A wide section of the Island community turned out to show their support for the project during the filming and the team of film-makers, Chris Harris and Eli-Louise Wringe, found themselves being filmed by students from the Royal Manor Arts College who were accompanied by teacher Angus Dawson.
Mr Dawson said: “Our students have worked here at Living Stone on a promotional video, using the cutting edge film and audio equipment which is available for community use and the result can be seen on YouTube on the Sculpture Trust.
“All that this place has to offer with a large variety of workshops for all, means that Portland people can draw on their heritage which otherwise could be lost.”
Another group of regular users of the facilities present were from Southill Centre where groups have been coming over to Portland for the past six years and finding great benefit and enjoyment from stone carving.
On their first visit to the centre, pupils from Underhill were enjoying working with and seeing the living stone as part of their new, creative curriculum. Carving and engraving their names with pride, teenagers from the Portland Detachment of Dorset Army Cadet Force, accompanied by Major John Bradshaw and Colour Sergeant Stone were present as part of their training for Cadets in the Community.