11th November 2018 is the centenary of the end of World War 1, where in the UK around 6 million men were mobilised and over 700,000 men were killed . I have been thinking about what I could do as a potter to mark this occasion in my community of Grappenhall and to honour the 20 local men that gave their lives.
A few weeks ago, quite by chance, I came across a dove cutter and it made me think of this important symbol of peace. I took it home and initially planned to make peace doves to hang from a tree outside of my studio, but this didn't feel like it was enough. Then I thought about the centenary and how 100 doves could represent all of those years. I suggested to my pottery students that we make 100 doves to hang in 10 trees in the local area that members of the community could then take home to keep. They were so supportive and enthusiastic and we have each made doves with individual designs that hopefully will create a lasting legacy.
The 'Peace Pottery Trail' is now up, but I have to confess, it has grown even more. There is an extra special '11th Tree' in the graveyard of our local church. This tree marks the 11th hour of the 11th Month and has an additional 20 doves each with the names of the men from our community that made the ultimate sacrifice. Also, after all the doves have flown to their new homes, there will be permanent reminders of this centenary in our community as I've made and donated larger doves for the two churches and the local library and a memorial for the local branch of the British Legion.
Today all of the trees are decorated and trail starts. Myself and my lovely students from Lemon Studio really hope that you come and enjoy the trail and the war poetry that we've included. After Armistice Day please take one of the doves to nest in your home.
If you want to walk the trail the suggested route is:
1. St Wilfrid's Church
2. Community Notice Board, Broad Lane
3. Chester Road (Near York Road)
4. Lemon Studio, Victoria Road
5. The Triangle, Hunts Lane
6. Grappenhall Library
7. Jubilee Park
8. Remembrance Bench, Bridgewater Canal
9. Nr Grappenhall Youth & Community Centre, Bell House Lane
10. Knutsford Road, Nr Bradshaw Community Primary School
11. Grappenhall & Thelwall Royal British Legion
"AT THE GOING DOWN OF THE SUN AND IN THE MORNING
WE WILL REMEMBER THEM"