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The Hunky Punk Project

Updated: Jun 11

We are very excited to announce the Hunky Punk Heritage project, a collaboration between the Arts Hub, East Harptree Primary School and the Newton Project with St Laurence Church, East Harptree. Arts Hub artist Louis Neale and local artist and villager Patrick Barker ran a series of after school classes with children from East Harptree Primary School in April and May 2024. The project entailed a rediscovery of culture and imagination, a group of children from the school participated in designing and creating their very own HunkyPunk, which shall then be displayed in St Laurence church, East Harptree for an exhibition on 8th and 9th June 2024.

For the first session, Louis and Patrick took the school children to St Laurence Church to view the hunky punks sculptures on the stone towers. The children found their favourite hunky punk as inspiration for their own hunky punk design. The second session was about the children designing and starting to create their own hunky punk in modelling clay, and the third session the children painted and put the finishing touches to their sculptures. Thank you to Louis and Patrick for delivering such fantastic sessions and to the children for the amazing works they created. We are really excited to display the fantastically creative hunky punks in the exhibition at St Laurence Church on 8th and 9th May and hope it will be a great community event!

What is a HunkyPunk?

A HunkyPunk is an elusive yet elaborate stone sculpture from fifteenth century Somerset.  ‘HunkyPunks’ actual meaning derives from old english words, ‘Hunkers’ and ‘Punchy’. These short, squatted figures are found on church towers throughout the rural region. Their decorative features are deeply rooted in folklore and story-telling, depicting mythological creatures and animals. #

Feedback from Squirrel Class at East Harptree Primary School:

“I enjoyed every single last thing”

“I really enjoyed everything, especially the painting. The lion hunky punk at the church

inspired me. I created a dragon”

“I liked making the hunky punks and going down to see the ones at church which I have not

really noticed before”

“I learnt you can make anything with clay!”

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