Yesterday’s fire at the Burnley School for the Arts has caused £500 worth of damage. Early indications are that the bus stop is irreparably damaged.
Burnley Art School was founded in 1968 as part of the hippie revolution. It moved into the refurbished Bus Shelter, in Croft Street in 2010. There were concerns that changing the bus stop use to a learning establishment would alter the character of the area. The faculty said they, certainly, hoped so.
Once the school moved into the historic bus stop their courses, in Urban Graffiti, became immensely popular with two teenagers. The main purpose of the school was to attract foreign students on the school’s, Come and Overstay Your Visa programme. This will be unaffected by the fire damage, as none of the students attended class.
Firefighters stood by and let the fire destroy the historic bus shelter, simply stopping it from spreading to the near-by waste paper bin. The cause of the fire is unknown, although the presence of discarded cigarette-ends and methylated sprits indicates a likely source.
Andrew Beer, Dean of Burnley Art School, explained the bus stop had been completely engulfed in flames and will cost about £500 to replace. Until then he doesn’t know where the faculty are going to sit and drink all day.
He went on to mourn the loss of some particularly fine, and historically significant graffiti. “The loss of our prized Wanksy mural, a small child eating a pie, is a significant loss to art history. We will try and get Wanksy to come and create a replacement piece, but it won’t be the same.”
With the current government cut backs, it is unlikely that there will be Art Council funding for a replacement Bus Shelter. The Dean has launched an appeal to raise funds for a replacement bus shelter. Anyone who wishes to contribute can do so by visiting www.BurnleyBusShelter.com or by dropping a few pennies in the hat as they wait for the Number 3 Bus.