Celebrating the King's Coronation

Across Community Lives, groups have been involved in an incredible art project to mark the Coronation.

Using natural materials collected from local parks, groups worked together to create a giant lion sculpture, which is on display in the lead up to the Coronation in Windsor town centre, for the whole community and visitors to enjoy. 

The art installation is the combined effort of all parts of the Optalis Community Lives Service, which supports people with disabilities, people with long-term conditions and people living with dementia in Windsor, Maidenhead and the Wokingham borough.  

Using twigs, pinecones, willow, and other natural materials that have been collected by people during their nature trails and conservation work. This unique artwork is a testament to the creativity and resourcefulness of the groups. The plan is to transform it into a regal eco-bug home, in honour of King Charles III’s green credentials. 

Jo Werret, artist in residence at Boyn Grove Service explained,

“This art project helps showcase the creativity and talents of the people who use our services. We are proud to support them in their efforts and excited to see their lion sculpture and crown at Windsor during the Coronation celebrations.”

Mfalme the Lion is on display at Windsor Yards, near to the Queen’s Jubilee Monument.

In addition, the Community Lives Services are taking part in all sorts of wonderful and inclusive activities and events during this period. Including, learning the National Anthem, God Save the King, using Makaton. 

Katherine said:

The best sign I learnt was ‘VICTORIOUS’. I got a dry mouth after all our practicing but I really enjoy it.

Makaton is a communication system that uses signs and symbols to support communication, particularly for people with learning disabilities. 

They have also taken part in Scottish dancing to celebrate the Royal Family's Scottish connection and are also enjoying a royal-themed sensory story, using interactive storytelling props.

Another Communities Lives group has made and painted a crown. This task was led by people living with dementia, providing a great opportunity for everyone to express their creativity and be a part of something special.

Signing the national anthem

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Optalis Community Lives provides day opportunities to adults with learning disabilities, people with physical disabilities and people living with dementia across Windsor and Maidenhead and Wokingham. Our experienced team are committed to providing a varied and meaningful programme of activities suitable for people of all abilities.

We pride ourselves on being a fun and engaging service. Our aim is for people to leave our care, each day, with a great big smile.

We think broadly and with ambition to improve individuals’ quality of life by offering opportunities that matter to them; through
volunteering, leisure and social activities, developing life skills, and work opportunities. One size does not fit all, we offer a range of opportunities that people can choose from.

Across all our services, we help our customers with a range of support needs, from medication to personal care or emotional support. 

Find out more about our Community Lives Services.

More about the artists and groups involved

Alex working on one of the legs

Alex enjoyed working on larger-sized artworks and has helped with both the tail and parts of the legs.

J working on the tail with soft grasses

Jackie; "I liked tying up the grass and making the tail."

IMG 4045

Deane; "We worked with ‘Men in Sheds’ to make the base for the Lion. I helped to put the wheels on and cut the wood."

Forming the head edited

Forming the head

Creating the lions leg

Creating the lion's legs

Creating the tail

Creating the tail

Creating the lions head

Creating the lion's head

Tying grasses together

Tying grasses together for the lion

Nature group collecting items

Nature group collecting materials

Happy Florists

Preparing materials for the lion

Pink crown

I have enjoyed colouring in the crown, my favourite colour is pink

Making posters

I like talking about the Coronation party and what we will do

Making crowns

I made a crown

Woodley Earley customers painting items to be used as jewels on the orb and other decorations

Creating jewels for the orb

Woodley Earley customers painting items to be used as jewels on the orb and other decorations for the May event

Group working on the orb

People we support at our Dementia Community Lives service shared some of their memories while working on the crown for the display to accompany the lion: 

We went to my uncle’s house to watch Queen’s Coronation as he was the only family member to have a TV
I watched on TV we lived in Westminster, the atmosphere was lovely
I was a guard at Buckingham Palace
I was there and saw the gold coach
Crown decoration