top of page

Man and mower

This section 'Man and Mower’ is a small homage to my Father Donald. He was a steady, kind gentleman; a keen tenderer of our home's glossy lawn, and a meticulous craftsman.
Growing up I took little notice of the variety of creative pastimes he enjoyed in his spare time: his detailed tapestries, fine wood working skills and hand stitched leather gloves and cases.
However, having recently re
read his memoirs they shed light on the circumstances that inspired him to make so many stunning pieces.

His passion for stitching began in 1945: he was aboard a hospital ship in Egypt bound for England, he had severe T.B in both lungs.The occupational therapist onboard introduced him to tapestries. He was told keeping occupied and smoking a pipe were key to improving his morale and a full recovery (from that day to his death in 1993, at home every evening he was never without a needle and thread on his lap). Once off the hospital boat, he spent 3 long years in a Sanatorium in Sussex recovering from his war injuries. In-fact the Queen Mother regaled in her hat, bag and gloves, visited him in his room during his convalescence and the story goes it was so stuffed with all his projects, that she could barely find the space to stand.

His memoirs detail his personal and war time experiences in Africa, Italy and Palestine, adapting to civilian life after the war, the heart breaking loss of his first wife and child during childbirth, and his stoicism in starting his life all over again.
To me he was just Dad: on the train from London every day, in the garden and in his workshop absorbed in a pastime. It is only now looking at some of the works I can fully appreciate the healing role the process of creating these objects played in his life.

bottom of page