New sculpture at Beverley Art Gallery celebrates the history of Beverley Shipyard

Wed 28th April 2021
Hannah Honeywill Portrait

The team at Beverley Art Gallery are looking forward to welcoming a new sculpture – ‘Vera’, by Hannah Honeywill.

The work is part of the gallery’s Contemporary Arts Uplift funding from Arts Council England.

‘Vera’ is both a celebration and a memorial to the hundreds of ships that Beverley Shipyard produced over the years. The sculpture’s conception focuses on the history of the steam trawler ‘Vera’ built there in 1907. ‘Vera’ was wrecked at Mydalssandur, South Iceland, in 1925.

The sculpture will take the shape of thousands of iron rivets hanging on fishing wire, creating a shimmering shoal of rivets to form the shape of ‘Vera’. The rivets used to make the sculpture will be just like the ones used in traditional shipbuilding methods.

Hannah Honeywill is an award-winning artist, and she has exhibited widely throughout the UK and Europe. She has been the recipient of Wellcome Trust funding and has undertaken residencies at the Britten and Pears Arts, Barber Institute of Fine Art in Birmingham and the Chisenhale Studios in London. She is an elected member of the Royal British Society of Sculptors.

Beverley Art Gallery curator Helena Cox said:  “I am delighted to work with Hannah on a project that is both innovative, inspiring and deeply rooted in the fascinating history of Beverley shipyards.

“The sculpture will be placed in the beautifully restored Edwardian ‘red gallery’ among the much loved artworks from our permanent collection. Having such a striking contemporary piece in this setting will create an inspiring contrast, perhaps even helping us to see the permanent collection in a new light.

“Hannah is currently working on constructing the sculpture and she will be sharing images from the process on our social media, so make sure you follow us on Facebook and our new Instagram: @BeverleyArtGallery, and Twitter @BevArtGallery”

The 'Trawling Through Time' project (2018-19), funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, which looked at the history of the Beverley shipyard, has also been able to continue its legacy, with some of the plans digitised by its volunteers now being used to inform and inspire the artwork.

For those interested in learning more about the history of Beverley Shipyard, the documentary ‘Trawling Through Time: The Story Of Cook, Welton & Gemmell’ is available on the Active East Riding website at

Photo -  Hannah Honeywill in her studio

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