Healing pictures of growing up

Friday, 23rd August 2019 — By Calum Fraser and Helen Chapman

Painter from Highbury has returned to her old haunts

 Ruth Beck and her paintings

Having moved away from her parents’ home in Highbury, painter Ruth Beck has come back to visit her old haunts.

Ruth, 47, has been painting “for donkey’s years” until she was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in her thumb on her right hand four years ago. “I literally wasn’t able to hold a pen,” she says. “But painting was what I did to relax, it is my me time.”

Rainbow Theatre Finsbury Park

After an operation last year, she gave up her job at a school in Kent, where she now lives, and held off from painting whilst her thumb healed. She is now selling her artwork and focusing on making her painting hobby into a career.

Painter Ruth Beck

Ruth went to school at Highbury Quadrant and then to Starcross School, now Elizabeth Garrett Anderson. Her parents met at the Holloway Odeon Cinema where her dad worked as a projectionist and her mum selling film tickets and ice cream.

“For me, painting Highbury was just like a therapy,” says Ruth, who left her family home and moved to Kent age 28. “If you look at my paintings it is like I am retracing where I grew up. I am picking buildings to paint that really mean something to me.

“It is a privilege to be born in Highbury. I was one of the lucky ones and it is a place I love and still love.” Ruth sells postcards for £2.50, packs of cards for £9 and A3 poster prints for £10 on her Etsy website. Visit www.etsy. com/uk/market/ruth_beck


Number’s up for Ron’s market stall

New roads in Chapel Market

The number of pitch boxes in Chapel Market has been reduced with some market traders losing the number they have held in their family for generations. The famous market road was dug up last week with new tarmac laid down and boxes repainted. There were 138 pitches on Chapel Market and six on White Conduit Street, this was reduced to 110 in the new layout.

Ron Granger, who has run a stall in the market for more than 30 years, said he welcomed the new road. But he added that it was a “shame” he had lost his pitch number, 47, which had been in his family for more than 100 years. He was given pitch number 35 in the reshuffle.

David Twydell, chairman of the Chapel Market Traders’ Association, said: “I think it looks all right. The road was needing to be done, so I guess they thought they might as well change the boxes at the same time.”

Our very own ‘litter hero’ eco warrior

Christian Medina receives his award

Stand aside Greta Thunberg, Islington has it’s own child climate warrior who is doing his bit to tackle the impact humans are having on the planet.

While Ms Thunberg has been convincing teenagers to walk out of school and go on climate strikes, young Christian Medina (pictured) has decided to set an example to his fellow Whitehall Park School pupils on how they can help the environment on their morning commute. For more than three months, before the schools broke up for summer, 10-year- old Christian was picking up litter along the streets of Archway on his way to and from the Hornsey Lane school.

To recognise his achievements Christian received a “Litter Hero” Keep Britain Tidy certificate and goody bag in a special assembly at Whitehall Park Primary School, with a talk about recycling from the council’s environmental manager Steve Wigzell.

Whitehall Park School teacher Dean Thompson said: “The children really loved the recycling talk given by Steve and were really excited to see Christian receive his award. They have been inspired to take better care of the local area and the environment.”


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