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Seeds of Hope – Journey Through Untold Stories

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  • Entry to this event is included with a Grounds & Below Stairs ticket and is free for members.

Saturday 30 June – Sunday 4 November 2018

It is 100 years since the end of World War I, and your first day as a new gardener at Harewood.

Your first job is to clear out an old shed where deep inside an old trunk you come across the journal of ‘Bothy Boy’ John Hobbs, a gardener from a hundred years ago. His brother George is at war, but with change on the horizon, there are more hopeful times ahead.

Seeds of Hope, a brand-new experience opening up new parts of Harewood, will take you on a journey from darkness to light, as you step back in time and explore estate life through the eyes of John Hobbs in 1918. Curated by Lord Whitney, you will unearth personal letters, photographs and objects, and explore the stories of the women who worked the land, of injured soldiers who sought solace in the Walled Garden and much more.

Beds of heritage fruit and vegetables encapsulate part of Harewood’s war efforts to help feed those both home and away, whilst a peace garden of 12,000 Cosmos ‘Purity’ flowers offers a moment of contemplation. 1,269 sunflowers individually planted in sandbags, line the old glass house throughout the season – each a symbol of the 1,269 soldiers who were treated at Harewood when it was an auxiliary hospital for those injured in the field. And transporting you on your journey is a newly-commissioned soundscape that drifts from the Bothy through to the apple orchards.

Self-sufficiency, resilience, healing and hope guided the staff and family on this estate a hundred years ago. A truly uplifting experience, Seeds of Hope is as much a reflection on the past as it is a look to the future.

This exhibition was kindly supported by Arts Council England