04 | 06 | 2023

Forget-me-not Children's Hospice Panel

The Forget-me-not Children's Hospice opened in November 2011, with the official opening taking place in 2013, to serve the needs of children in Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield. Members of the Club had thought about 'doing something' for the hospice, beyond just the fundraising, which they had been doing, particularly through the sale of the booklets which accompany the two World War panels, housed within the Royal Armouries Museum, Leeds. The sale of these booklets had already raised £8,500 for the Hospice by early 2012.

Members of the Club agreed at the AGM in 2012 to produce a panel for the children, and the staff of the FMN Trust received the idea with great enthusiasm. So 4 subgroups were established to do the planning and organising. It was agreed that the content of the panel should reflect the story, memories and activities of young people from infant to adult, including those with disabilities.

One subgroup set about drawing and collating images that would form the carved plaques from themes such as fairy tales, sport, animals, activities, etc. Another subgroup planned how to make 8 of the carvings into automata with moving parts and sounds, under the guidance of one member who is a national expert in this field. This was a departure for the club as this had never been tried before, but another member was skilled in applying low voltage electronics to achieve these effects. A further subgroup planned the accompanying booklet format and content and the fourth subgroup planned the construction of the frame and panel with all the moving parts.

All carvers were issued with 3 copies of their individual picture, instructions on carving depths for their piece of lime wood and a timetable for completion. Most carvers undertook the carving at one or more of the classes where they could discuss their progress with each other and supplemented this with carving at home. Meanwhile, members sorted out the automata, the frame, the booklet and the whole construction process.

The final panel consists of 40 carvings, 8 of which are automata, surrounded by a beech wood frame and measures 9' by 4'. The panels are screwed from the back onto a birch ply back board. At the base of the panel is a control station where each of the automata can be operated by the children.

The booklet, which accompanies the panel, describes each plaque by means of a photograph, the name of the carver and a short description. The cover shows the carving of the nursery rhyme - Ring a ring o' roses. There is an additional pullout section, comprising a sketch of each carving, which can be used as a colouring book for children.

The panel, which was met with great enthusiaasm, was completed and erected inside the Hospice in time for the official opening on 21 June 2013 by HRH Princess Beatrice of York accompanied by our Patron, the Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Dr Ingrid Roscoe.

Click on the Gallery button in the menu to see photographs of the completed panel and of the individual plaques which make up the panel.

If you would like to purchase a copy of the booklet, please contact us via the contact form on this website or via email to mail@wrwoodcarvers.com and we will arrange with you how to obtain one (£5 inc p&p).