Wednesday, 30 January 2008
Tuesday, 29 January 2008
The School was based on principals established by John Ruskin and the Arts & Crafts movement of ‘truth to nature’ and honest craftsmanship as a reaction to burgeoning industrialisation . Classes for metalwork were initially held in the Crosthwaite parish rooms offering instruction in drawing, design, and woodcarving and was sufficiently successful that in 1893 a dedicated workshop was constructed with a grant from the County Council and private donations. It soon acquired a reputation for high quality copper and silver decorative metalwork and in the following decades the School, under the management of a committee of Trustees, evolved into a successful commercial metalwork enterprise employing full time craftsmen as well as providing classes. Early work was influenced by the Celtic and Norse heritage of the Lake District, a period enthusiastically espoused by Rawnsley and his circle, specifically WG Collingwood. By the end of the nineteenth century and following the appointment of Robert Hilton as director in 1904, Art Nouveau and the simpler Arts and Crafts style came to prominence. It is these styles that dictate the form of most war memorials.
Apart from the marble frame, which is an unusual addition, the example here at Dacre is typical. It has clean and formal lines with little embellishment and the letters are created using a
technique known as repoussé. This requires a design to be drawn on the back of a blank piece of metal, generally copper or brass. Having been softened with heat the blank is then held on a bed of warmed pitch which supports the metal and yet is soft enough to receive the impressions formed by a series of punches. The three main tools used are the round raising punch for the main design, the tracing punch for ‘chasing’ outlines from the front of the piece, and the finishing punch for smoothing down the background of the design.
The popularity of these designs is perhaps a consequence of the appointment of George Atholl Weeks as Director who together with Eleanor Rawnsley, Canon Rawnsley's widow, set out to re-invigorate the School in the post-war years. In 1925 Weeks married the daughter of G.D. Abraham, author, climber and photographer who opened the shop, "The New Enterprise" in Lake Road retailing the work of the school. Total sales for 1925 were higher than in any year since 1913.
Keswick School designs normally have a stamped monogram, 'K S I A', in the bottom right hand corner. Due to competition from cheap imports and changing tastes the school closed in 1984 .
Monday, 28 January 2008
In Gosforth church there is a large marble plaque describing the death of Captain Charles Allan Parker, Royal Marines, who was killed during during the Crimean War (1853-56) fought between Russia and an alliance of Britain, Turkey, France & Sardinia. Though the principal and most memorable events of this absurd & tragic conflict took place on the Crimean Peninsula on the north coast of the Black Sea, most famously the charge of the Light Brigade, there were other less well known encounters, principally naval actions aimed at disrupting Russia's Far Eastern trade routes. One was at Kamtschatka (Kamchatka) on Russia's Pacific seaboard.
For a fuller description of this and other similar actions see; http://www.pdavis.nl/Russia2.htm .
Overlooked by a towering and still active volcano, Petropavlovski remains an important base for Russia's eastern fleet and a quick look at Google Earth will show a number of facilities, including floating docks and significant storage facilities. It also illustrates what a God forsaken piece of desolation this place is - but a small patch must be 'Forever England'!
Saturday, 26 January 2008
Wednesday, 23 January 2008
The picture on the advert shows a guy working on the memorial for Botchergate, Carlisle. The company is still going, from premises on Warwick Road.
Monday, 21 January 2008
Sunday, 20 January 2008
The two memorials and a further plaque with four names taken from Waverton memorial which stands outside the church were mounted on oak which had 200 holes drilled in it for poppies or other mementos. The whole was rededicated on Remembrance Sunday, 2007.
Saturday, 19 January 2008
Those war memorials that were constructed in the twentieth century contain in almost every instance lists of names of those who died and/or served in conflict. It is sometimes assumed that this is the totality of their commemoration. But that is not the case.
53170, Private Harold Gardner of Ulverston is commemorated in many places.
His name appears on the town's principal memorial, the market cross, but it also appears on the name panels in the War Memorial Chapel in St Mary's parish church, on the memorial in Ulverston Victoria High School and on the school's photographic Roll of Honour, on his family's grave in the local cemetery and finally on the panels of the missing at Tyne Cot Military Cemetery, Passchendaele, Belgium. He was killed aged 19 near Armentieres on April 10, 1918, while serving with the 9th Battalion, Cheshire Regiment. He had arrived in France on March 29.
The Ulverston Grammar School Mag for summer 1918 has a short obituary for the lad. He was a pupil at the school from 1911-12, following which he went to Ghyll Bank, Whitehaven. He initially signed up with the 26th (Bankers) Battalion, Royal Fusilers, (City of London Rgt).
Harold appears on the 1901 census as living at 36, Casson Street, Ulverston with his Father & Mother. His Father, Thomas, though born in Holker was employed as a 'Local Inspector of Nuisances'! An admirable occupation! His Mother, Alice, was an Ulverston girl. Harold was their only son. Thomas lived on until January 1931 leaving Alice to gow old probably alone. There are no other names on the family grave.
The photo roll at Ulverston Victoria, from which this picture is taken, is a rare and precious survival for local and family history. There are other surviving photo rolls in the County, notably at Dent showing the men of the Congregational chapel and at what was formerly the 'K' Shoes factory in Kendal. There were others, at Burneside and Bowness on Windermere for instance, but I am not aware that these have survived. The 'K' Shoes pictures were rescued from a skip by a former employee in the 1990s when the factory changed ownership.
Friday, 18 January 2008
Wednesday, 16 January 2008
It also appears to have been inscribed after WW2 as it contains the name of a man who was killed with the Seaforths in 1942. Was this added to earlier names or was the design still available post 1945? I don't know.
The Great Orton roll appears to bear the names of all who served entered in the same hand but in a rather haphazard fashion suggesting that some member of the community was given charge of the roll either during or after the conflict.
Unusually it has been further embellished with a substantial frame decorated with regimental badges. It is not unreasonable to imagine that these may have been worn by village soldiers, and that their inclusion added a further degree of intimacy between memorial and veteran. The picture of the soldier appears on a number of other rolls in the county.
The informal partnership of Brundrit & Miller was constructive, there are a number of instances of them working together in Furness around the time of the Great War, most notably on the Coronation Hall, Ulverston, designed by Brundrit, where Millers plasterwork remains a striking feature. At Great Urswick Miller's astonishing woodcarving in the parish church and his illuminated Roll of Honour was complimented by Brundrit's memorial cross. There are almost certainly other unacknowledged instances in the district of their working together. Miller certainly created the reredos at Lindal parish church and possibly that at Millom.
I would like to know more about these individuals.
Designed by Mary Kynaston Watts-Jones (1879-1951), wife of Captain Hector Lloyd Watts-Jones R.N., of 'Canon Hey', Windermere, this splendid cross is interestering in a number of respects. When a faculty was first applied for at the consistory court at Carlisle it was refused with the observation that it too closely resembled a tombola! It is also slightly unusual in that the designers name is inscribed on the base of the memorial, in general it was a matter of principle that only the names of those who served or died should be inscribed on a cross.
Mrs Watts Jones unveiled the memorial herself in October 1920 and she is also buried beside it.
Two of those named on the memorial, Capt William Higgin-Birkett of Birkett Houses & Lt Joseph Holt of Blackwell, The Arts & Crafts House, are also commemorated by imposing and decorative plaques in the church. That for Holt was created by Harold Stabler.
It is a spectacular place in early spring when the churchyard is entirely covered with daffodils, a beautiful sight.