The piece is a wall hanging depicting a local nature reserve – Messingham Sand Quarry. I visited this reserve over a year ago with my cousin who lives nearby – her dad’s ashes are scattered there – and it’s her favourite place. I went back last April with husband and camera in tow and looked a bit more closely at the layout intending to make a map of the reserve for my project. What I didn’t expect was a total journey of discovery and memories of a place I had visited as a child.
The nature reserve used to be a sand quarry, the sand being used to make coloured glass. This fascinated me to start with as the sand was shipped across to The Netherlands. The spaces left by the missing sand are now beautiful lakes full of geese, swans, ducks, damselflies and dragonflies. I returned a month later with notebook, camera and husband, to try and make a map of the reserve as I had decided to use this as my final piece. This is when I discovered an old crab apple tree and an old field boundary – from here we could see the road and the Quarry (which is still there). The reserve now has a different entrance from another road. I suddenly remembered coming here with mum and dad on a Sunday afternoon – we called it Sand Pits and mum used to collect the Crab Apples to make apple jelly. I needed to get this memory in my work. More to follow!