CONSTRUCTION has commenced on a special memorial for Hamley Bridge’s Janet Hughes who, sadly, lost her life during the 2015 Pinery fire.
The project, called ‘A Seat For Janet’, began around six months ago and is an adapted version of the mosaic couches that were created in communities affected by the 2015 Sampson Flat fires.
Organiser, and friend of Janet, Wendy Williams said work commenced on the memorial a fortnight ago, with many locals coming together over two days to decorate tiles, which will be placed on the seat.
“Kate Alfors, who is ‘That Mosaic Chick’, instructed people on what to do and she simplified it for them,” she said.
“She had a lot of equipment there for people to use, and a lot of tiles and things, and people came along and helped themselves; there was a real buzz.”
Ms Williams said the two-day event was a special way to remember Janet, and was also a nice way for the community to collectively heal.
“It wasn’t just about Janet, although that is the major point of it all, but it has also served as a bit of a recovery for others,” she said.
“A lot of people that knew Janet came along and had a good weekend, and put together a tile.
“Whether it was them doing a tile for themselves, or whether they knew something about Janet and they incorporated that into their tile, it all was just nice.”
The seat project, and the two days of tile making, were financially supported through grant funding from Bendigo Bank and the Barossa Foundation, which each provided $2000 towards the community event.
The seat, which will be located at Hamley Bridge’s Apex Park, is yet to be complete, with construction of the structure expected to be finished within the next few weeks.
The tiles will be fixed to the couch after it is completed.
Ms Williams expects the seat will create a nice space for people to come along and reflect on the fires, and remember Janet, with an official opening to be held at a later date.