AN arts student who dreams of becoming a cartoonist has drawn upon her design talents to win a prestigious competition. North Yorkshire art and design student Grace Hoe not only secured the top spot in the contest but the runner’s up place as well with her two designs to promote a glittering charity ball. Darlington’s mayor Jan Cossins commissioned Darlington College students to produce a range of arts materials to feature her annual charity ball in April, which is themed on the Windrush generation. Grace, 17, of Catterick Garrison, a first year Level 3 student, wowed the judges with her work which featured mixed racial elements, the Windrush ship, which brought a generation from the Caribbean to the UK to help rebuild after the Second World War, and the colours which reflect African heritage and black culture. “There were so many great entries that I didn’t expect to win,” said Grace, who one day hopes to publish her own cartoon comics. “I am so pleased to be chosen.” The mayor and founder of the Arthur Wharton Foundation Shaun Campbell, whose family were of the Windrush generation, judged 42 entries which had been completed by Level 1-3 students from North Yorkshire, County Durham and Darlington. They were so impressed with the work that they now plan to stage an exhibition at the foundation centre, which was built to commemorate Arthur Wharton, who came to Darlington in 1883 from Ghana to become the epicentre of the black presence in professional sport. A pioneer and trailblazer, he became the world’s first black professional footballer and also enjoyed considerable success playing rugby, cricket, sprinting and cycling. All the artwork will be auctioned at the charity ball, which takes place on April 12 at the Dolphin Centre, Darlington, and appear on a blank wall as a mural at the Arthur Wharton Foundation centre in The Denes. Coun Cossins said: “This has been so difficult to judge as all the entries were absolutely amazing, magical and fabulous and I loved them.” Sean added: “It is clear that all the students have really listened and understood the brief and they all should be applauded for their work. “Their artwork is so sophisticated with elements that are pure genius, such as the mixed race couple dancing, the colours of the Caribbean and Africa and even references to the sharp hats that many of the Windrush generation wore when they arrived in this country. The graphics were magnificent, the work outstanding.” Darlington College lecturer Amy Minto added: “I’m very proud of the students’ work which reflects just how much the story of the Windrush generation captured their imaginations.” For more information on opportunities at Darlington College visit www.darlington.ac.uk.