Plumlines exhibition opening

At the Plumlines opening event attended by over 400 people, Poet Laureate, Dame Carol Ann Duffy, read from her collection of poems, supported by John Sampson who contributed by playing a selection of period musical instruments. One of the many highlights of the day, was the first performance by the Oriel Singers of ‘A Song For Croome’, words written by poet, Brenda Read-Brown, put to music by Freya Ireland, an eighteen-year old musician from Cheltenham.

Plumlines is a co-produced community arts project, which culminated in an immersive exhibition created by professional artist Su Blackwell.  

Plumlines opened on the 19th November 2016, 2 days before the centenary of the first meeting of the Women’s Institute in Pershore and it will close on the 19th November 2017.

Oriel Singers perform at the Plumlines opening
 Oriel Singers

The Oriel Singers (2005 Choir of the Year winners) under the Musical Directorship of Ben Sawyer gave a very moving and chilling performance.  Freya’s work was made possible by a National Trust Croome legacy donation to support new talent, helping young artists like Freya get a first foot on the ladder of success.

Plumlines is an emotional experience, including the poetry of 188 people from Worcestershire whose female relative’s lives and sacrifices in WWI are featured on small paper sculptures in the shape of saplings that appear to grow through the floor from individual Pershore plum stones. 

A Plumlines sapling
Plumlines sapling

A poem written by Brenda Read-Brown and Heather Wastie which appears on the walls of the room, tells the story of Plumlines making connections between the many women featured and the involvement of the Coventry family in ensuring nutritious Pershore plum jam reached the soldiers fighting at the front..

Su Blackwell amongst the saplings
Su Blackwell

The National Trust gratefully acknowledges the work of the following groups who contributed:

Writing West Midlands, Pershore Young Writers, Stanley Road Primary School, Parents and Children, Worcester University, Pershore Number 8, Pershore High School, The Malvern Family History Group, St Barnabas First and Middle School, Worcestershire Writers Circle, Bewdley Bards, Croome Volunteers, Worcestershire Regional WI.

Plumlines was managed by Rachel Sharpe Creative Partnerships Manager and Kiki Claxton Creative Programmes Coordinator, Croome Redefined.

Visitors at the Plumlines opening
Plumlines opening