THE latest mural in Saltcoats town centre has officially been unveiled.

The newest addition to the town was completed at the end of last month, before it was 'opened' yesterday (Monday, July 10) by those who created it.

The work was commissioned by local volunteer group SeaSalt Streets, which is seeking to make improvements to Dockhead Street and surrounding environments.

The group has helped produce murals in Saltcoats before - such as the popular art work in the lane next to Home Hardware.

That previous piece was created by Ardrossan artist Tragic O'Hara, who was once again enlisted for the latest work in the lane almost directly adjacent at Sloane's Jewellers.

Though this time, Tragic had a little bit of a helping hand, with six local youngsters helping put together this newest mural.

It was something Tragic was delighted to be a part of, as he told the Herald when the mural was unveiled.

He said: “I’m from Ardrossan, and I learned how to spray paint and do this stuff the way you’re not supposed to do it – it’s frowned upon.

“So when there was a chance to work with some young folk to paint something – it was good.

“It’s good because there’s a path now, there wasn’t a path when I was growing up, you were a vandal and that was it."

Stood alongside Tragic at the grand opening were two of the youngsters involved in the project.

Sophie and Emma said it was great to "try something new" with the project, and that it was "actually really cool" that their artwork is now going to be on permanent display.

Tragic added that he was more than happy to impart his knowledge on youngsters like Sophie and Emma and that it was great to be able to practice with them, on the wall at the Hip Flask, before completing the mural.

He commented: "When the project came up, it was taking the young folk, telling them about the history of graffiti.

“It’s 50 years-old this year – graffiti in its purest form started in New York but you’ve got the South American School of Graffiti, you’ve got the European School of Graffiti, you’ve got the British School of Graffiti – they’re all different.

“People don’t treat it with the respect they maybe should do – the way they look at old oil paintings and talk about the impressions.

“Graffiti is 50-years old and it’s not going anywhere. So we talked about a bit of the history and how you get into it and all that sort of stuff – then there was the practice wall.”

Tragic went onto say this is something he would love to see more of.

He continued: “I was 15 when I started doing it, on and off building up to this.

“Usually you just turn up and you’ve had an hour to draw on a bit of paper and then you need to fire something up on a wall.

“Actually having a space to practise and let young folk actually paint the things they wanted to paint – having the opportunity to do it in a safe environment rather than the way I had to do it when it waspeople’s garage doors.

“For them to have a space where they could actually practice the stuff before coming down here and painting something else – there should be a something like that, a public space for people to paint.”

While it was not only Tragic who was delighted to be able to support the youngsters.

Andrew Magowan, Link Up programme manager, added how great it was to have the artist encouraging the youngsters.

He said: "Today's celebration of the new mural is another step for our Sea Salt Streets group towards revitalising Saltcoats town centre.

"The direct involvement of local artist Tragic O'Hara in supporting six young people to undertake the work is building new skills and encouraging young people to reimagine how the town centre might work for them."

While he was also pleased to see local businesses back the project.

Andrew added: "What's more, our approach also engaged two local businesses in the process and we are grateful to them - Sloane's Jewellers for permission to use their wall and Urquhart Opticians for funding support."