East Anglian Group Industrial Training apprentices create giant diamonds for jubilee celebrations at Norwich Cathedral

A team of Norwich apprentices has been busily creating giant diamonds which will be part of a special art installation decorating Norwich Cathedral during the Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

The four-metre by one-metre aluminium diamonds, each created by two triangles, have been made by students at East Anglian Group Industrial Training (EAGIT), based at the Airport Industrial Estate in Norwich.

The diamonds, the idea of Blofield-based designer Sue Nicholson, will be adorned with flowers and suspended in the cathedral's nave during the Diamond Jubilee festivities, and they are being dedicated to Sir Bernard Feilden and his contribution to saving the spire of Norwich Cathedral in the 1960s.

The team have also created 25 small diamonds for a special mobile which will form a centrepiece to the display.

The EAGIT apprentices said they were pleased to be involved with the project for such a historic occasion and that it gave them good practical experience too.

Samuel Rednall, 17, from Reedham, was the main student leading the project, which was overseen by EAGIT tutor Andy Likins.

Samuel, a trainee maintenance engineer for Petans, who is doing an advanced apprenticeship level three in operation and maintenance, said: 'It was a fun project and when the diamonds go up in the cathedral it will be good to be able to say that I helped to make them.' Regarding his role in the project, he added: 'I helped with tacking them together, welded some of the corners, and made a jig to press some clips which will support the diamonds.'

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Aaron McHugh, a welding and fabrication apprentice who is 19 and from Thetford, said: 'It was inspiring doing something for the Queen. I really enjoyed the project. I am excited about seeing the diamonds in the cathedral. I feel honoured to be taking part in the project.'

The other welding and fabrication apprentices taking part are Joel Tweedy, 20, from Aylsham, Horace Buckenham, 19, from Briston, and Ben Clement, 18, from Dereham.

Their tutor, Mr Likin, said the project was a great way for the students to play a part in the Diamond Jubilee celebrations and gain more experience, and that it was a brilliant opportunity for EAGIT – a training organisation for the industrial and commercial sectors in engineering – to showcase the work of some of its students.

Designer Sue Nicholson said: 'EAGIT have been brilliant, they've helped me find a way to turn my drawings into something tangible. We are doing this all for charity and EAGIT have done the work for free and a local supplier, Aalco, gave us a discount on the aluminium.'

Norwich Sheet Metal also helped with the project.

The giant diamonds will feature alongside 100 Norfolk-themed flower arrangements at Norwich Cathedral's Flower Festival from June 1 to 4 which will celebrate Norfolk's long-standing association with the monarchy.

The floral designs will focus on people and events that have made a significant impact on Norfolk since the Queen came to the throne in 1952 – including Lotus, Bernard Matthews and Ted Ellis.

Tickets for the flower festival cost �7.50 and all profits will go to Norwich Cathedral, The Big C and Norfolk and Norwich Families' House. To book tickets email flowerfestival@cathedral.org.uk or call 01692 670521.

Are you doing something in Norwich for the Diamond Jubilee? Call Emma Knights on 01603 772428 or email emma.knights@archant.co.uk

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