When you think of a bench, what is the first thing that comes to mind?
Is it a place to rest? A wooden structure? Is it something that you’ve never really considered before?
What if I said to you that a bench can minimise the risk of loneliness and isolation?
A bench can offer a sanctuary away from the stresses of everyday life.
The bench can signify a place for people to remember loved ones in their favourite location.
The placement of a bench encourages people to get active – instead of sitting at home watching TV or playing computer games, a person can go for a walk, confident that because a bench is located on their walking trail, they will have the chance to rest, if required.
Author and playwright, Mehmet Murat Ildan said,
“If you have found a quiet bench in a quiet park and sat down, be sure you had a very profitable day.”
This is a quote that resonates with me.
In today’s society, the power of a bench is underestimated but here at ESF, we are proactively encouraging the use of benches through our innovative design ideas.
The Stellar Solar Smart Bench, designed and manufactured by ESF, meets the needs of the consumer that always has to be connected due to its WiFi and mobile device charging capabilities.
The bespoke themed bench we created for an attraction within a leading global theme park in Hong Kong is not just a bench – it’s a major part of the overall immersive experience that young children and people of all ages enjoy when they are engrossed in a magical performance.
One of our early products at ESF was the Buddy Bench – an amazing concept for children in the playground who aren’t sure who to play with or talk to, or who just want to assess a situation before joining in a group. This fantastic idea, created by an eight-year-old boy named Christian, reduces the risk of loneliness for kids and encourages them to meet and play with new or old friends.
A 2015 film by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, ‘Alone Together, the Social Life of Benches’ explores the micro-space of the bench, incorporating contributions from a diverse range of visitors, providing a fascinating insight into the importance of benches in public locations.
You see, a bench is not just a bench, it’s a space that can be enjoyed by anyone. Think of the stories that have been told by strangers meeting for the first time sitting on a bench and the memories that have been made.
So next time you sit on a bench, spend some extra time thinking about the possibilities this humble piece of street furniture has brought and will continue to bring.
If you’re feeling inspired, have a look at our comprehensive range of benches and street furniture products here.