Hind of the Morning is an art and music installation currently on display in the newly re-opened Fitzwilliam Family chapel at Wentworth Woodhouse. The project was funded by Arts Council England and Wentworth and Elsecar Great Place. It is a partnership project between Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust and Rotherham Borough Council Early Help Team and is inspired by a story handed down to Richard by his adopted grandfather, Harry Gale.
In July 1912, King George V and Queen Mary visited Rotherham. As the guests of Earl Fitzwilliam, they stayed with him a Wentworth Woodhouse. In honour of the royal visit and out of respect for the Earl, local people, many of them coal miners worked together on a remarkable feat of artistic endeavour. They exposed a large and level bed of coal that out-cropped close to the surface in the fields around the House. Harry remembered that the miners swept the coal so clean that it shone like a mirror. At dawn on the day of the Royal visit he watched as a deer and her calf crossed the mirror. They were gradually bathed in golden light as the mirror reflected the summer sunrise. Later that day those same miners gathered at the House and formed a torchlight parade using their pit lamps while a local choir and musicians performed in a concert inside.
We rekindled that spirit of that endeavour by engaging 60 young people from Rotherham over a period of 3 months in the creation of the work’s two main features; a large coal mirror and a musical soundscape, featuring the Glass Harp, depicting the relationship between the hind and her calf.