Friday 11th June 2021 to
Friday 31st December 2021
The Lesnes Hundred by Eric MacLennan is a socially engaged piece of art offering members of the public the opportunity to name a tree after someone important to them. We’ve always given names to important things in our life, so why not give trees individual names too? Not the names of celebrities or the famous, but the unsung of the community. The people that matter to us. The Lesnes Hundred celebrates ordinary people who have been ignored by history ... teachers; friends; ordinary (or rather extraordinary) people who have done good things without seeking recognition.
As well as celebrating our ‘unsung’, The Lesnes Hundred will give focus to the importance of the environment for our future. Named trees will be more cherished. Trees have always been important to us, we need them now, more than ever, to combat the climate crisis, they’ve inspired poets and painters around the world, and they can even improve our happiness. We care about our trees, so by naming them we will show how we value them.
Earlier this year, artist Eric MacLennan interviewed a hundred members of the public (people of all ages and backgrounds) who all came forward to name a tree in Lesnes Abbey Woods after someone important to them… an unsung hero(ine).
These interviews are now all completed.
One hundred trees will now be named after these extraordinary people.
This will be known as The Lesnes Hundred.
A celebration of people. A celebration of trees.
Download the Lesnes Hundred map here.
Each tree will be identified by a small aluminium number tag . A map will reveal the names of the unsung and include grid references to help locate the trees. A book will tell their stories. When members of the public visit, they’ll be able to access audio recordings describing each of The Lesnes Hundred.
A planned celebratory walk is scheduled to take place later in June for participants, their families and the unsung heroes! The book of the project will be published later this year, telling their stories and the stories of the trees.
The title of the work - The Lesnes Hundred - gives an acknowledging nod to the ancient name of the area that included Lesnes Abbey Woods, which was known in the 1100s as “The Hundred of Little and Lesnes” A “hundred” is term used to describe a division of land that was used around a thousand years ago in England.
The Lesnes Hundred are:
Campaigner who saved an ancient woodland
Campaigner for social justice
Friend and carer - full of laughter
Sheltered accommodation worker
Volunteer who helps refugees
A special friend who put others before herself
Grassroots community activist
A kind mum
Primary school teacher
Inspirational fitness trainer
Best friend who puts family first
Best friend with shared sense of humour
Parent support group leader
GP and conservationist
Charity runner and local community champion
Dad who saw beauty in small things
Dedicated mental health professional for young people
Performer, writer, puppeteer and disability rights activist
Grandad who offered random acts of kindness
Radical art critic
Children’s centre manager
Co-ordinator of a mental health arts project
Loyal and popular council worker
Promoter of mental health recovery through the arts
Teacher, mentor and player of the bagpipes
Loyal and brave friend in junior school
Retired nurse and supportive neighbour
Partner and driving force for good
Haematologist and hero
Pharmacist who did much for the community
Life and soul of the party with a heart of gold
Someone who puts others first
Walking group leader
A doer not a talker
Blind woman always on the lookout for others
A builder of living willow fences
A brilliant caretaker
A woman who helped those in need
A young musician
A new born baby
A supporter of everybody
A good friend in hard times
A pillar of strength
A selfless twin sister
An east-end docker and wonderful dad
Hospital worker with two other jobs
A phenomenal woman
A Brownie leader
A foodbank helper
A charity trust helper
Volunteer for three charities
A worker with the homeless
A hospice worker
Artist and environmental campaigner
Selfless dad and gardener
Eric MacLennan has been making avant-garde performance work for over thirty years.