Funded by Historic England’s Hi!Street campaign, and on behalf of the Bedford Creative Consortium, we’ll be unearthing a local urban legend and celebrating Bedford High Street all through the power of 3D Illusion Art.
We have commissioned a world-renowned illusion artist, Julian Beever, who will create a piece of extraordinary 3D art at the site of the old bank on the High Street. The piece will allow the people of Bedford to take a virtual look underneath the riverside bank site and discover what lies beneath.
Based on a local urban myth that a hidden treasure – a bank vault – is still buried underneath the site, the art will depict past Bedford high street workers and shoppers who used the bank in their daily life.
The bank provided support and expertise to the family businesses of Bedford. Through these relationships, its role became synonymous with that of caretaker of the town.
The artwork will be revealed over the Spring Bank Holiday weekend, in line with current COVID restriction easing, but the Vault Project will also have a digital offering. The public can delve deeper into the stories and characters that made the unique history of Bedford’s High Street.
The Bedford community are encouraged to share any stories of shopkeepers or local characters from the area to help build a rich collection of tales that will bring the high street to life and celebrate its relationship with local Bedfordians.