Thousands of people ‘flew with The Flock’, Wentworth Woodhouse’s moving outdoor art installation to mark the Covid pandemic.
Now there’s a chance to own a part of it.
A concept created by Planet Art, The Flock saw people from all walks of life hand-decorate 10,000 wooden birds with their memories of the first COVID-19 lockdown in spring 2020.
It became a symbol of how people pulled together to cope with the challenges – and throughout October, vast numbers flocked to walk through the creative and emotional sea of birds displayed on the front lawns of the Rotherham stately home.
Just 500 of the birds will now be given a new lease of life. They will be sold to raise funds for the Preservation Trust in its 20-year, £130million task to regenerate the Grade I listed Georgian country house.
“As we all look forward to restrictions lifting, Wentworth Woodhouse decided this was the right time to ‘release’ some of the birds,” said Samantha Heritage, Head of Fundraising at the charity.
“Each one is beautiful and has its own story to tell. We reckon they will fly off our virtual shelves and every sale helps towards our running and repair bills.”
The birds – each one an original artwork – will be released in batches of 100 and will be sold for £15 each.
The first batch were released at the beginning of April and includes birds adorned with colourful imagery and tributes to the NHS, each mounted on freestanding displays. Buyers can also choose to have their bird framed at additional cost.
Visitors to the mansion’s private gardens can view a selection of the Flock birds for sale. They are on display in new garden cabins which will be ready to hire from June.
Bought alongside a new outdoor classroom with a Culture Recovery 2020 grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund last spring, the cabins will add to the Trust’s outdoor facilities during the pandemic.
Flock birds are being sold through the Trust’s online shop.