For today's Object of the Week, we are taking a look at a beautiful felted panel created by patients and staff from local secure mental health and learning disability services.

THIS striking artwork, handmade from felt, is full of mysterious and intriguing creatures rising from rich, shimmering fibres.

It was created as part of the Arts Project by patients and staff from secure mental health and learning disability services at Bamburgh Clinic in Newcastle and Northgate Hospital in Northumberland, both run by Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust.

The piece was made using a process called felting, where fibres of natural sheep's wool in different colours are laid out and matted together by hand to form a thick fabric. In this case, metallic threads were included to add delicate strands of gold and silver, and the final intricate details have been added using embroidery. Patients worked with a professional artist who was very experienced in felt-making to learn these skills before making the piece.

Inspired by the Woodhorn Colliery Museum, it depicts the fossils that miners often found at different levels of strata when local coal mines were first dug. Nature is often a source of inspiration for patients, whether that be printing with leaves or seaweed, or painting large-scale canvases of landscapes.

Weekly art sessions are tailored to each person's needs, following a referral to this specialist team by their Occupational Therapist, and the project can often play a vital role in peoples' recovery.

There is lots of evidence that creating art can help people feel more socially included and improve their self-esteem and confidence, as they are encouraged to recognise their achievements and take pride in sharing them with others. In the Arts Project, patients come together in less clinical surroundings to explore their creativity in a cheering and friendly space surrounded by many colourful and interesting works of art such as this one.

As the Arts Project has a huge archive of work created over the years, the team are holding an Art Fair to showcase some of the work to the public. All the artworks will be for sale, with proceeds invested back into the project.

The Art Fair will be held on February 4 and 5 at St Nicholas Hospital in Newcastle, from 10am to noon and 1.30pm to 4pm both days.

This is a rare opportunity to view and purchase a unique collection of artwork, including this beautiful felt panel.

For more details, visit