Rose Tinted Glass: Stained Window Artist Speaks at Chapel
L-R: Dr Paul Silverwood (QM), Mel Gooder, Adrienne Owen (OMA), Rachel Thomas and Trevor Howard (York Glaziers Trust).
On Wednesday 18 September, QM welcomed Rachel Thomas of the York Glaziers Trust to speak about her experience of creating the beautiful pair of stained glass windows which now frame the front of St Margaret’s Chapel.
To commemorate their centenary, the Old Margaretian Society commissioned two large stained glass windows, to be designed and created by Rachel Thomas. Last Wednesday, Rachel spoke to the entire school and explained the significance of the windows. She was presented with a gift to commemorate the occasion by Adrienne Owen and Mel Gooder, Chairman and Secretary of the OMA, respectively. Rachel also presented the OMA with a small piece of stained glass in the style of the OMA crest.
‘The windows are a generous contribution to the history of Queen Margaret’s,’ noted Head Master Dr Paul Silverwood. ‘We always encourage our girls to aim high and we felt that Rachel Thomas is an inspiring female role model for the girls, encouraging them to follow their passions.’
A book complementing the stained glass installation has also been produced by the School. Titled 100 Years of Friendship, the book is based on material held in the School archive and submissions from Old Girls sharing their memories. Please contact the School directly for further details on attaining a copy.
A transcript of Rachel Thomas’s Chapel Speech is given below:
“It was many months ago that the York Glaziers Trust were first asked to mane new windows on behalf of the Old Margaretian Association for the St Margaret’s Chapel.
I was given the job of designing the windows. I wanted to come up with something that would be right for the space, but also something that reflected the ethos of Queen Margaret’s, and the vibrancy and life within it.
I hoped these windows would be bright and colourful, but also draw visitors’ attention to the front, helping to create a place of calm, warmth and spiritual piece.
The amber glass in particular symbolises the warmth and light of God, whilst the use of a silhouette to depict Queen Margaret in prayer would allow each viewer’s own perception to complete the detail in their own way.
The flowers and leaves also having meaning; they are symbols from the early Christian interpretation of nature. Nature was held to be an instructive message – and to a medieval Christian, creatures and plants symbolised different aspects of the Christian faith. The red rose symbolises the blood of Christ; the daisy the innocence of Christ and the violet the symbol of humility and grace. The vine depicted as the continuous binding around each of the windows symbolises faith, endurance and long-lasting friendship.”
Old Margaretian Association Book ends Centenary Celebrations at QM
On Saturday 15 June, the Old Margaretian Association’s Centenary year concluded with a variety of celebrations held at Queen Margaret’s.
Beginning with tea in The Wenlock Library, Old Girls were treated to a day of reminiscing and celebrating the history and heritage of their alumni association, culminating with the dedication of two stained glass windows to the school, and the release of 100 Years of Friendship, the new history of the school written by QM archivist Cynthia Batten.
After tea, a service of Dedication and Holy Communion was held in the St Margaret’s Chapel and conducted by the Right Reverend and Right Honourable Lord Hope of Thornes. The service celebrated both the kind donation and the stories of the women of QM throughout her history and was the perfect event to celebrate the longstanding relationship between the OMA and QM.
Afterwards, guests were treated to a lovely lunch in The Wenlock Library, followed by the official launch of 100 Years of Friendship. The book, which covers various eras within the existence of the OMA and highlights the stories of individual Old Girls, was compiled by Mrs Batten after many conversations along the way. Copies of the book can be purchased from the school directly.
Afterwards, the Drama Department invited all attendees to stay for A Day in the Mind of Tich Oldfield and Ernie’s Incredible Illucinations, the two productions on offer from Lower School dramatists.
Special thanks to everyone who contributed to or attended this very special day. Please look for a front-page feature of both the event and the lovely new stained glass windows in the forthcoming Easter Term edition of QM’s ‘Q’ Newsletter.
Cynthia's book "100 Years of Friendship" available now from the OMA, c/o Mrs M Gooder, Dame Christian's House, Coneysthorpe, York YO60 7DD Price £12.00 each to include P & P.
The Centenary Stained Glass Windows - Work in Progress
York Glaziers Trust are still busy at work preparing two panels of stained glass windows which are due to be presented to Queen Margaret’s school by the OMA during the capstone centenary celebrations which are scheduled to take place on Saturday the 15th June.
These beautiful windows will be dedicated at the centenary service which will be conducted by the Lord Reverend David Hope, former Archbishop of York.
Further details of this exciting and prestigious event will be posted to the QM website as they come available.
Invitations to this special event will be sent out soon.
Thanksgiving Service for Mrs Rosemary Price - 3 November
OMA - Centenary Celebration at QM
On 3rd November, the QM community joined with members of Mrs Rosemary Price's family and many friends to hold a Thanksgiving service during regular Chapel service. As Head of Careers from 2001-2011, Mrs Price's contributions to QM and her influence on and support for countless OMs is truly irreplaceable.
"Friendships that last a lifetime" - Saturday 30 June 2012