Pentrich Rising - South Wingfield
2 March 2020
Photo credit: Kaidi Huang
Photo credit: Jo Wheeler
A reprise of the walk devised in response to a commission from the South Wingfield and Pentrich Revolution Group, as part of the commemoration of the bicentenary of England last armed uprising. The walk from South Wingfield was the first in a series of three soundwalks, potentially experienced singly or, for the very fit and keen, back-to-back. The route takes in Hunt's Barn, where the revolutionaries met before splitting up to gather 'volunteers' and weapons from farms in the locality. It passes the copse where pike staves were cut and the Colburn quarry where the pikes were then hidden, before reaching the Wire Mill, close to the rendezvous point for the march to Pentrich, Ripley and their ultimate destination, Nottingham.
At this point the soundwalk leaves the marcher's route and returns to South Wingfield, passing Wingfield Manor
and the house inhabited at the time by the local magistrate, Colonel Wingfield Halton. An underlying theme to the work is the temporal shift between the present day and 200 years ago, and the differences and similarities between people's lives then and now.
The walk is around two hours in duration and designed to be experienced at a brisk pace, to capture the sense of pressure that the original walkers might well have been feeling, chivvied by the 'Nottingham Captain' Jeremiah Brandreth. I also tried to generate sense of foreboding, through the sounds of bird alarm calls and agitated livestock, in contrast to periods of male companionship and conviviality. The majority of recordings that I used for the soundwalk were captured in situ, with some found online or taken from my own sound archive. I also commissioned Leigh Toro to compose several pieces of music, and he based these on the contemporary refrain 'Oft in the Stille Night'.
The recording can be listened to at https://soundcloud.com/beechbuchanan/south-wingfield-1/sets
The series Pentrich Rising comprised three soundwalks: South Wingfield, Pentrich and Giltbrook, encompassing three of the most significant features of the original march, its beginning near South Wingfield, the confrontation at Butterley Ironworks, and its climax in what is now the Ikea car park.
I offered the opportunity to create the Pentrich soundwalk to
Benedik Williams, book-ending this with my own opening and closing walks.
In creating the walks I applied my usual methodlogy, of researching the events of 1817, studying maps and archives. I walked extensively around the area to identify the routes for the soundwalks and once these were decided, made several durational recordings as I walked their extent. In the studio I edited the recordings and added other sounds, before returning to the sites to test, re-edit, test, re-edit and so on......until I was satisfied with the results.
The recordings are available at
South Wingfield (2 hours)
Pentrich (2 hours)
(NOTE: this was composed by Agnes and Benedik Williams)
Giltbrook (1 hour)
The soundwalks were funded as part of the grant that the South Wingfield and Pentrich Revolution Group were awarded by the Heritage Lottery Fund for the bicentennial commemorations.
Fellow artists collaborating
on the project are Leigh Toro, Agnes Williams,
Benedik Williams, Alasdair Thurston-Ambrose and