© Parish of Hawley 2021
Harriet Wyatt was the wife of the second vicar Fr. J.I.P.Wyatt Harriet was a gifted artist., who also composed Organ music, was choir mistress and taught herself to carve stone! She was responsible for the intricate stone carvings depicting detailed flower and leaf designs, which were taken direct from nature and can be seen mainly in the Chancel and Sanctuary area. These took many years to complete and are a fine memorial to her outstanding skills.
However, it is for her exquisite Altar Frontals for which she is best known. Four have survived and can be seen at Westminster Abbey, Winchester Cathedral, Chichester and Oxford, having been restored to their original splendour in recent times. It is documented that each frontal took some seven years to complete! Sadly we do do not have one in Holy Trinity Church. A brass plaque on the west wall commemorates Harriet and her work.
Why did Harriet chose the above locations for her frontals?
WINCHESTER - where her sons went to school - portrays the Transfiguration. Made between 1880 - 1887.
CHICHESTER - where her husband was ordained - portrays the Resurrection. Made between 1887 - 1893.
OXFORD - two sons went to Christ Church College - portrays the Ascension. Made between 1893 - 1897.
WESTMINSTER - to fulfil a need - portrays the Transfiguration. Made between 1897 - 1905 (first used Easter Sunday 1905).
Like many Victorian families, the Wyatts produced a large family, with Harriet somehow finding time to bring up no fewer than 7 children! No doubt there was help from those "below stairs". It seems they inherited her artistic skills and the girls often assisted their mother in her "labour of love" with the Altar Frontals and other fine embroidery and needlework.
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