Half a world away

August2013 003

Image of ‘Buried’ by Cara Manton, inspired by Brownhills history.

This came in overnight from reader Cara Manton, from Sydney, Australia. I just had to share it – I think many readers will be interested in the apparent reach of the blog. I think they’ll also be pleased that no matter how far away, Brownhillians are all over the world, remembering and considering their roots.

Cara has completed the artwork in the photos for a school project, all inspired by images she was inspired to create by Brownhills history. If you study the images careful, you’ll spot a number of familiar scenes, beautifully sketched. I particularly like the poppies and the use of the recurring them of hands.

Cara certainly has a wonderful talent.

I thank Cara for her lovely, lovely words, and love her work. Cheers! I’m sure I speak for all the readers in thanking you for sharing your work from so far away and thinking of us.

I don’t know what the weather is like in Sydney today (although I can probably make a good guess), but here in the ‘Hills it’s throng it down and coming on autumn. Little changes…


Image of ‘Buried’ by Cara Manton, inspired by Brownhills history.

Cara writes:

Growing up around the black country, my family being from the area since anybody can remember, I’ve always been fascinated with our heritage and culture, and it saddens me that my generation pays so little interest in it! Now 18 and for the last 5 years living halfway across the world from humble old Brownhills in Sydney, Australia, I try not to let my roots down, and strive not to lose my true sense of self and heritage in this new life.

August2013 004

Image of ‘Buried’ by Cara Manton, inspired by Brownhills history.

Your blog is just wonderful, and I was trawling through it one day when it inspired me to base my final school art major around the past of our people, the hardships, the industrialism, acknowledging the heroic nature of our parents, grandparents and so forth, as well as the quite saddening fact of the neglect that the area now faces (Brownhills high street being a prime example).

So, BrownhillsBob, a thank you is in order as it is the research found in each of your posts that shaped my art work, and made it an absolute success! The unique nature of our heritage placed in the middle of my Sydney school shot it to the top of the class, allowing me to tell the tale of our area to all who saw it. I got 98% for it, and without the concept handed to me by your blog in particular, would never have achieved so much.

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Image of ‘Buried’ by Cara Manton, inspired by Brownhills history.

The panels each represent a member of my family who have died in the pits, the youngest being 11, and showing a little of our story, the development from a child down the mines, to a soldier thrust into the front line of battle, to an older man worn down by his labours yet still bold and steadfast. Although you can’t see too well in these photos (terrible camera quality), old maps of brownhills, tags acknowledging pit disasters, the staffordshire knot, and a series of sketches of a huge falling chimney that I found on your site, shape the true meaning and depth of the work in relation to our heritage, and the disintegration of much of it.

So a big big thank you for the inspiration, do keep posting! 🙂

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Image of ‘Buried’ by Cara Manton, inspired by Brownhills history.

This entry was posted in Brownhills stuff, Clayhanger stuff, Environment, Followups, Fun stuff to see and do, Interesting photos, Local History, News, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Shared memories, Social Media, Walsall Wood stuff and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Half a world away

  1. David Evans says:

    Hi Cara
    your artwork is capitvatingly original and evocative…congratulations. Thankyou for sharing with us.
    kind regards and best wishes to you in your future artistic career

  2. Andy Dennis says:

    Great work, Cara! I think David has it right: “captivating, original and evocative”. And despite the title, it is so alive.

    In 1861 an Edward Manton was living just round the corner from my house.

    Best wishes, Andy

  3. Pedro says:

    Yes indeed great work Cara. And many thanks to Bob for his efforts!

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