We are delighted to announce the launch of the new book ‘Keepers of the Light – Portland Bill and Chance Glassworks’ by Brendan Jackson and Geoff Broadway, along with an accompanying short film.
Tuesday October 1st, 2 pm, Sandwell Community History & Archives Service, Smethwick Library, High Street, Smethwick, B66 1AA. Places are limited so please RSVP 0121 569 4985
Friday October 4th, 7.30 pm, at Peter Trim Hall, St. George’s Centre, Reforne, Portland, Dorset, DT5 2AN.
The Portland Bill lighthouse is iconic. Operational from 1906, the third light at that location, it was equipped with a magnificent First Order catadioptric rotating lens from Chance Brothers of Smethwick, about as far away from the sea as you can get. Based on rare archives materials and people’s stories, the artists explore both this unique island in Dorset and the legendary glassworks in the Black Country, at the time of construction of the light and then some 50 years later, when the lighthouse engineering works was about to close.
The project has been supported by Arts Council England. The artists would like to thank Sandwell Community History and Archives Service, Chances Glass Works Heritage Trust, Smethwick Heritage Centre and b-side, Portland, for their help and support.
In advance of the launch, the site of the glassworks in Smethwick will be available to visit in September over 6 days as part of Heritage Open Week.