AN ARTIST has made history by painting the UK’s first-ever Basketball art court.

Lois O’Hara, 23, turned the rundown court in Saunders Park, Brighton, into a colourful space to entice more people to use the facility.

More than 100 people came to its official opening this week.

Players from Venice Beach League and Dunk Elite also attended and they gave coaching lessons to players from local youth basketball clubs.

Lois, from Brighton, said: “The project took one year of planning and ten days to finish painting the court.

“I had some help from volunteers.

“This is an amazing achievement as it’s the UK’s first-ever basketball art court.

“The court used to be so rundown and it had a negative vibe. The backboards were broken and there was graffiti.

“Basketball England sponsored the project and they added new backboards and lines.

“I was exhausted when I finished painting the court. The court looks very lovely and I encourage people to come down and see it. A scientific research suggests children are more likely to partake in activities if the play area is colourful.

“We want to encourage people to do more outdoor activities.

“All of my artwork is very colourful and my style is very fluid and full of motion.

“I think that fits in perfectly with basketball as the game has that flow. The two go together so nicely. I want to thank Valspar Paint who supplied the paint materials.”

In July, Lois painted a rainbow crossing outside the West Pier Arches shops to help traders attract more visitors.

Basketball England’s senior delivery manager, Peter Griffiths, said: “Lois came to us about a year ago looking for some support and advice on how she could get this amazing concept off the ground.

“Outdoor basketball is easily accessible and doesn’t cost anything compared to an indoor space. It’s often the first place that people will go to try out basketball and making more courts like this will definitely attract more people to the game.”