Since having our wood router serviced we have been busy working on various wood based commissions.
Deana Wildgoose head of the Hero project first approached us to produce some wooden cut outs for her famous 50 project. Since then we have gone on to produce wooden products for her THINK! Tool projects, Geordie Hero exhibition and her fifty fantastic females project.
The famous 50 project saw us cut out 50 life size soldiers to represent the first fifty men to go to France in WW1. The project was aimed at school children and children’s clubs designing and decorating one of our cut outs and selecting and researching one of the actual lives of the first 50 soldiers before war broke out.
When the exhibition displayed locally in Coalville market place on remembrance day, all the members of the Caltef team went to see the spectacle. Our very own 6-year-old Jake and his class mates decorated a soldier of their own. It was very touching to read every man’s story and gave us a great insight into their personalities and what their lives would have been like before the war broke out. What also struck me personally were the amount of men that didn’t return home. It’s awareness projects like these that keep their memories alive!
Deana Wildgoose, founder of the Hero Project kindly employed the services of Caltef Designs once again. This time our mission was to cut out and supply her with 50 life size human figures for the Hero project where she transported them up north to Newcastle by train! It’s amazing how raw materials can be bought to life in this way. I’m sure Deana and friends got some pretty strange looks and excellent conversation on their journey.
As well at the famous 50 and Hero project, Deana most recently commissioned another 50 wooden life size ladies. These will also be going on their travels to celebrate a 100 year’s centenary of the Women’s right to vote in Deana’s Fifty Fantastic Females project. Deana’s enthusiasm and passion for people is infectious. So much so that William and I stayed up till midnight one-week night watching a documentary on the suffragettes in order to learn more about this project. When we were both at school (a long time ago now) the subject of women winning the right to vote was briefly touched on. After watching the documentary we both realised we had no idea on the lengths these women went to in order to achieve this.
In the mid-19th century Britain was a very different place for women. It was very much a women’s place is at home, keeping house and looking after her husband and children. The suffragists began campaigning for women’s rights to vote via peaceful protests. After years of campaigning and with their views and requests unheard the Suffragettes were born. This group of women ran militant campaigns and actively targeted men in parliament and high standing. They were prepared to do whatever it took to get their views heard. These women committed arson, made and planted bombs, burnt homes and establishments to the ground. They would actively assault men in power and even police men. They wanted to be arrested to cause maximum publicity and distribution. When in prison they went on hunger strikes which resulted in them being forcibly tube fed through the nose and into the stomach via a twelve-inch-long pipe. I can’t begin to imagine how driven and brave these women were. We have these ladies to thank for our rights today. My mum’s words always ring in my head when I think can I be bothered to go to our local polling station after a busy day, ‘’those women dedicated their lives to fight for our right to vote!’’ She’s quite right and of course I will always go.
For more information about the wonderful community work Deana Wildgoose is involved with visit her website for more details, www.heroproject.org.uk