Literature Festival to create Lockdown Lantern Installation

A local festival is creating a stunning Lockdown Lantern installation to commemorate a year since the first Covid-19 lockdown (23 March 2020).

The installation, commissioned by Huddersfield Literature Festival (HLF), will take the form of a giant metal tree festooned with willow and tissue lanterns and displaying words of hope to inspire the local community as they walk past.

Created by Huddersfield-based Company, AniMATronics, the tree will be on display in the Lawrence Batley Theatre courtyard in Huddersfield from 23 March until Easter Monday, 5 April.

Festival Director, Michelle Hodgson, said: “We hope it will serve as a commemoration, a memorial and an inspiration to remind us of the challenges we have faced in the past year and to look forward to more positive days ahead.”

The tree and the courtyard will be lit up every evening, between 6pm and midnight, with lanterns created by Colne Valley artist Angie Boycott-Garnett and children from Holmfirth-based Children’s Art School.

The event is being sponsored by Ravenhall Risk Solutions, an independent chartered insurance brokers based in Belfast and Leeds.  Neil Grimshaw, Director of Ravenhall Risk Solutions said, “We are proud to be continuing our sponsorship of the Huddersfield Literature festival for the 8th year. The lantern installation will be a symbol of positivity whilst recognising a challenging year for most.  We hope the installation is an inspiring message of hope and a brilliant contemporary addition to the literature festival for 2021.”

The installation will be complimented by an online Lockdown Poems event the same day with award-winning poet Kei Miller, Chérie Taylor Battiste and Michelle Scally Clarke.

The Festival has now announced its March programme, with many free events taking place online for the second year in a row, due to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

This year’s online programme has the theme of ‘Escape’ and events will include a range of talks and workshops.  Community groups across Huddersfield are also being invited to take part in the HLF/Woven Book Trail project by using repurposed fabrics and other recycled materials to recreate a favourite character or scene from a book, with prizes for each area winner and an overall winner.

All booking details and information can be found on the Festival website:

Molly Marshall from The Children’s Art School

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