Mick Ronson, East Hull’s very own ‘Spider from Mars’, his life and work as a world-famous musician and producer are to be commemorated in a very special way at Wilberforce Sixth Form College in Saltshouse Road, Hull this week!
At 3.30pm on Thursday 22nd November all of the College’s music rooms will be re-named and opened as ‘The Ronson Rooms’, with two of Mick’s younger siblings , Maggi and David present to join in the celebrations with staff and students. Music performance areas, classrooms and rehearsal rooms will now have names that meant something to Mick and his inspiring music including ‘Rats’, ‘Hoople’, ‘Spider’ and ‘Mars’.
Local artist, Mark Hebblewhite, will also be unveiling a mural painted from one of world -renowned sixties photographer Terry O’Neill’s iconic images of Mick. Terry O’Neill has waived copyright for his photo to be used in support of this special Mick Ronson commemoration in the musician’s home neighbourhood of East Hull.
The Ronson Rooms opening are just the latest in the positive links developing between The Ronson family and the College’s Music Department, who are both keen to ensure the ‘Turn to Face the Strange’ artiste’s musical legacy lives on in the area. These have included a charity gig at The Polar Bear that received generous funding from the ‘Turn and Face The Strange’ Company, with Wilberforce student bands performing to raise money for Papyrus, the teenage suicide prevention charity.
Claire Scott, Cultural Co-ordinator at the East Hull College located on Saltshouse Road, Hull comments ‘Mick was a brilliant musical talent from the heart of East Hull and his collaboration with David Bowie in the sixties culminating in ‘The Spider from Mars’ music caused a sea change in popular music and inspired a generation of young people. His legacy as a producer working alongside icon’s such as Lou Reed as well as his incredible solo career, make him a phenomenal and accessible role model for our students: a real example of a working class hero. Working together with the Ronson family we want to help ensure Mick’s music and positivity live on to help inspire a whole new generation of creative young people and are delighted to be commemorating our Music Dept in this positive way’.