Grim and Havelock Project

The Greatest Story Never Told is the celebration of Inclusion – it reimagines the legend that has been long forgotten, that of Grim and the rescued boy, Prince Havelock.  The legend of Grim and Havelock is the area’s oldest story of immigration known locally, and it helps us understand the value of community, whether born here or travelled here, this is our town.   

The project has many elements, an illustrated story book, storytelling with over a thousand school children, gallery displays and consultations, worldwide writers’ competition, artists, musicians, a local Viking Enactment Group, filmmakers and the input of many local  organisations, culminating in a five month exhibition at the Grimsby Fishing Heritage Centre.  It is free, and will also be available virtually, making it accessible worldwide.  All the funding has been spent locally were possible. 

Part of this project was the restoration of the Grim and Havelock statue created by Douglas Wain-Hobson, and its redisplay for public enjoyment.   Unfortunately, there has been a disagreement by local artists on the correct way to proceed.  As we at The Equality Practice have no expertise in this area, we are bound by the counsel of our team of specialist fibreglass advisors, some of whom we have worked with since the envisioning of this project in 2017,   before we took the statue under our wing in 2018.  

Because of this dispute, the Heritage Lottery Fund can no longer fund the repair of the statue, and so, as of Dec 2023, we had to accept that this part of the project would not be possible via this line of funding, but all is not lost!

There are 12 elements to this project. Only one, the repair of the statue, has not been possible yet, but we are determined.  With your help we can get this done.  Social Media interest has firmly established our fondness for this statue, with hundreds of people wading in with comments, ‘Get it fixed!’ ‘Give it back to the people!’  With your help, together we can do this.

We need 15K to get Grim and Havelock back.  We have secured a donation from John Barker Solicitors, who has given free storage since June 23 and a work space for the imminent repair with a team of artists, headed by the world renown  fibreglass specialist Trevor Harris.  We have secured a public display area for the statue, after the exhibition, from a business that does not want to be mentioned until the statue is repaired, and we have put in the first £1000 from our own source (unfunded).  We need to raise 14K, Can you help?

https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/grim-and-havelock-statue-renovation

The story of Grim and Havelock echoes through the ages and here, in 2023, greatly demonstrates the value that difference can bring to places.

Grimsby is a sum of its parts. It is a community of individuals operating together to form one beautiful whole. This is to be embraced. This is to be celebrated. Our locale is buoyed by new skills, talent and spirit that compliment old ways.

Remembering

I read an article recently on the importance of children learning to tell their own stories.   When I say ‘telling stories’ it may sound as if I’m in favour of kids lying to their parents, but actually, learning to narrate our own stories is vital to the understanding of the self. 

Learning to imitate, to use language, to understand tone of voice and body language influences how we grow up, expectations and how we communicate with others.  However, what intrigued me most about this article was its claim that we also come to understand the flow of time, and in understanding flow of time, we understand ourselves.

“How does that work?” I hear you ask.  Well, imagine this conversation:

Mummy:   Do you remember the ice-cream at the park last week?

Child:         Yes.

Mummy:    Well, if you’re a good girl, we’ll go again tomorrow.

Child:         I’m a good girl.

The obvious thing here, is the reward for being good – conditioning and blackmail all in one!  But the not so obvious, is the picture the child has.  The ‘self’ she sees eating ice-cream last week is not the self of today sitting in the room playing with bricks.  The self she pictures eating ice-cream tomorrow, is also not the self of today.  She learns to differentiate.  By picturing an ‘other’ self, she is building a story of herself through time and learning to narrate it.  In narrating it, she is slowly creating a self.  “I am a good girl and Mummy is taking me to the park to eat ice-cream” repeated often enough becomes I am a good person, and being a good person becomes important to our understanding of who we really are.

So, what happens when we say, ‘I don’t know who I am anymore?’  Have we lost our ability to narrate, to connect with the flow of time, of who we were and who we have become, of what we should be?  I’ll leave you to ponder.

#IncludingMe

A new, fun and exciting platform for people of all different backgrounds, abilities, colour, religion, gender, etc to join us at The Equality Practice, to talk about Inclusion. The platform allows people to talk openly and honestly about difference, its importance, its value to society, and at times, on a more personal note, how being different from the majority has been experienced by our guest.

Find out more about what inclusion means to different people on our YouTube channel.