We were honoured to host Patrick Neate, fresh off the plane from Zimbabwe the evening before, at Woolfson & Tay. In conversation with writer Rosemary Furber, Patrick spoke about the need to engage with Africa on a honest and respectful manner. He enlightened us with the background to Mugabe's ascension to power and the struggles of the nation since its branding as a rogue state. This made for an interesting and animated discussion.
Clare Mulley, author of The Woman Who Saved the Children: A Biography of Eglantyne Jebb, Founder of Save the Children, spoke with passion about her journey to discover who Eglantyne was. Supplemented by the private letters, archival records of Save The Children campaigns, newspaper articles and photos, it was a truly mesmerising talk. For those who may not have heard of Eglantyne Jebb, she was the founder of Save The Children, championing this humanitarian cause in countries like Austria after WWI when it was unfashionable to do so. Her work led to the UN's (then League of Nations) adoption of children's rights, which, to the audience's surprise has not been recognised by two countries in the world - the United States and Somalia! Eglantyne, who dedicated her life to her social work, is not remembered as much as she should, despite her overwhelmingly amazing achievements - including getting on side with the Pope (she was Protestant) to have Catholic churches worldwide conduct collections to save children. A pioneer and an inspiring woman, she deserves recognition and tribute; if for nothing else, in reminding us all that children deserve a chance to live. An awesome and enlightening night, thank you Clare! PLUS if you're shopping for a book this Christmas, why not buy Clare's book and inspire your family and friends? All royalties from the sale of this book goes to the Save The Children Charity.
Jan Greenman, author Life At The Edge, and her son Luke Dicker spoke about the challenges of living with ADHD, Chrnic Anxiety and Asperger. It was a heartfelt and touching talk.
Angel Boyle performing
The exhibition 'Travellers' by Danish photographer Kirstine Fryd launched with a pubic event - 'We Are Who We Are: Glimpses of Traveller Life.' The event was conceived with assistance from the Southwark Travellers Action Group (STAG) and Southwark Traveller Education Support Service (Ethnic Minority Achievement Team, Leadership, Innovation & Learning Support Division).
Dr Brian Belton spoke about the myths and misconceptions with regards to the label of Travellers. Simon Evans of Open Productions, using footage he had filmed as well as footage from UnmanageableTV, put together a short film featuring evictions throughout the UK. Simon spoke passionately about the need for sites rather than spending exorbitant amounts to "chase Travellers round the country." A short interview with Christina McDonagh, the 'Duchess of Peckham', by Woolfcub Productions, was also screened. Angel Boyle, 12, sang a few Country hits popular with young Travellers acapella style.
It was a thought-provoking event, raising questions and discussion about Traveller life and (mis)perceptions of Travellers in society. Woolfson & Tay would like to thank Kirstine Fryd, Dr Brian Belton, Simon Evans, Angel Boyle, Christina McDonagh, David Cannon, Tricia Bowie Phillips, Daniel Quinones and all who helped bring this event and exhibition to our gallery.
The number of people who came was unexpected. Quite a few guests arrived without prebooking as the evening wore on, and we found ourselves a little unprepared for the almost 50 guests who eventually turned up. As you will see from the photos, there soon was standing room only! We thank all who came to share in the insights offered that night and for your patience when we ran out of seats.
Ghouls came out to play, zombies raided pumpkin bowls for treats, the night filled with the shrieks of Tim Burton's A Nightmare Before Christmas... It was 'Boo at Bermondsey' time!
Facepainting at W&T
Storytelling by local author Rosie Furber
Rennard from Vitrine Gallery and Rosie Furber award prizes for winners of children's drawing competition
W&T turns into a ghostly haunt for the day...
Nightfall... Outdoor cinema at Bermondsey Square