Silent Sunday…….. Too Many Memories


Freddie Gilroy – Retired Miner and Soldier.

Deep in thought, or painful memories, this sculpture capture, a gentleman  recalling events that  would have scarred anyone’s life,  creating images permanently etched  within the mind.  Freddie Gilroy joined the army at the start of WW2,  but it was just before his 24th Birthday, when he was one of the first groups of soldiers to relieve Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp.   It is said, that he cried and every year on his birthday he shed more tears.

This sculpture, created from steel, is the work of Ray Lonsdale from County Durham.  Freddie was also from a mining community in County Durham.  I understand they became friends and that Ray heard  Freddie recount events from his life and the terrible memories he retained.  This inspired  Ray to create what has become a fitting memorial.  It has been said by others that Freddie was ‘a normal person, leading a normal life but had to experience extraordinary events and dangers of WW2’…..   the horrors of Belsen can never be forgotten.  Harsh lasting memories and a hard mining life, Freddie Gilroy died in 2008.

This larger than life sculpture can be found on a bench, with Freddie gazing out to sea, on the Promenade at North Bay, Scarborough, Yorkshire.  It was originally only an installation for a season.  However it was taken to the hearts of locals.  One person so moved donated the funds to secure its permanent location.

As we make new memories in difficult times we must not forget the trauma experienced by others over the years……   Today it is  also important that we….

 Remember to….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

23rd August

(C) David Oakes 2020

Tough life being an Artist


A group of local Artists set up for a morning of “Plein Air” painting and sketching in the Hydrangea gardens.  This rather distinguished gentleman had found himself a shady spot.   Now I am not sure, if having his eyes closed meant, he was seeking inspiration, mentally visualising the scene … or simple  enjoying  a short snooze  🙂

Whatever you plan to do….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

3rd August

(C) David Oakes 2020


Ascension Day…… and a Pagan Custom


Today the 21st of May is Ascension Day, a key date in the Christian calendar.  Prior to it being adopted by the Church it was an important date and event in the Pagan year.   Today would also  mark the start of the Derbyshire Well Dressing Season. 

The Pagan belief was in the  need to ‘Bless’ the life giving purity of the waters from these natural springs and wells in the villages.   A need for purity that may ring rather true today.

 Tissington village would in a normal year be packed with people, both for the Blessing of the Village Wells by Church Leaders.  Then a Procession round to each Well.

It is quite a spectacular. Sadly in these trouble times this cannot happen.  So I have cheated and adding two links to todays page.  They recap  visits  in earlier happy times.  Take a look at this rather unique event.

I hope you find the tradition interesting 🙂

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other


21sy May

(C) David Oakes 2020

Silent Sunday…….. Off to Church


Derby Cathedral

Just one image this Sundays visit to a Church.  It is the most fantastic, maybe, dramatic wrought Iron Chancel Screen.  Erected in 1725 it is the work of local Blacksmith Robert Bakewell.  Derby Cathedral is, in Cathedral terms, a new Cathedral.  It received Cathedral status in 1927.  Prior to that it was know as ‘All Saints Church’.

There was a religious building on this site as long ago as 943ad.  More substantial building occurred in the 11th and 14th century.  But in the late 1500’s the church went through a very ‘bloody’ period during a period of the persecution of Protestant’s.

Many rebuilds and extensions have occurred since and today you are greeted with a very contemporary feel to a very old church…. all rather special with the added touch of a unique Screen, a tribute in it own right to the skill of the craftsman.

As always….

Please Remember ….

Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other 

10th May

(C) David Oakes 2020

Easter Sunday Greetings……


An Easter Bunny to bring you some Easter Greetings this Spring… a very different Spring to what we thought could happen.

The image is a Victorian Greetings Card published by Raphael Tuck & Sons sometime between 1890 and 1901.

It is a simple flat card, small only 4 inches x 3 inches.  It is a little worse for ware but still able to present a traditional Easter message.

Spring is here and with it new hope for the future, a future that may well be very different for all of us

Please Remember ….
Stay Safe …. Be Kind…. Look After Each Other

12th April

(C) David Oakes 2020