Worksop Library reopens with exhibition that has links to the Queen

An acclaimed exhibition of poetic art, which has links to the Queen, is the first major event at Worksop Library after the dual devastation of flooding and lockdown.

Clive Brookes at the poetic art exhibition, which is on display at Worksop Library.
Clive Brookes at the poetic art exhibition, which is on display at Worksop Library.

The Covid pandemic delayed the reopening of the Memorial Avenue library after it was swamped by heavy rainfall back in November 2019.

But it was back in business on Monday, and will host the six-week exhibition in its gallery until the end of May.

It has been pieced together by prize-winning Mansfield-based poet Clive Brookes, who has written for the Queen and his friend, heraldic artist Andrew Stewart Jamieson, who was once employed as royal scribe and illuminator.

Clive, 79, first started writing poetry when he worked for more than a decade as a crane operator on North Sea oil rigs.

He has since gone on to release five poetry books, covering topics ranging from philosophy and sport to war and love.

During his time on the oil rigs, he once met the Queen at Aberdeen, and he has since penned several poems for her, including to mark her diamond jubilee and her 90th birthday.

Clive’s poems will be on display at the exhibition, all illustrated by artwork and calligraphy created, free-hand, by Andrew, whom he met in 2012.

The 60-year-old artist grew up on a council estate in Essex and once worked as a cleaner in a hospital. But he rose to become a world-renowned artist, producing wonderfully detailed coats of arms and illuminated manuscripts.

The exhibition, which has been years in the making, has already been displayed across the county, including at public libraries in Mansfield, Arnold, Hucknall and Southwell, and has earned rave reviews.

"It has been very well-received, both by the public and by academics,” said Clive.

“It came about through my friendship with Andrew, and it took several years to put the collection together.

"I wrote the poetry and Andrew did the artwork. The over-riding theme is a poet and an artist working together, using their skills to present unique poetic art for the public’s enjoyment.

"It consists of beautifully illustrated poems, set in first-class mounts and frames, which were chosen by my wife, Patricia.

"The pictures cover all kinds of subjects, and I would encourage Worksop residents to visit the exhibition while it is at the library. It really is outstanding.”