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Sat, 30 Sept



SOLD OUT - Lorimer Society Autumn Lectures

Two guest lecturers: Steven Blench on the plasterwork of Hannah and Robert Lorimer; and Harriet Richardson on James Bennet of Arncroach, blacksmith and vet.

Registration is now closed for our Autumn Lectures
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SOLD OUT - Lorimer Society Autumn Lectures
SOLD OUT - Lorimer Society Autumn Lectures

Time & Location

30 Sept 2023, 10:00 – 14:30

Pittenweem, Kellie Castle, Pittenweem, Anstruther KY10 2RE, UK

About the Event

Please note that this event is SOLD OUT and registration is now closed. Tickets are not available at the door, unfortunately. Please accept our apologies. Future events will be advertised via this website.


10.00 Arrivals and welcome

10.15   Lecture 1 – Steven Blench

11.00  Morning coffee

11.30  Lecture 2 – Harriet Richardson

12.15   Close of lectures

12.30  Lunch

Steven Blench: 'Art, Craft & Trade: An introduction to the plasterwork of Hannah and Robert Lorimer'

The late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were a particular rich and exciting period within the history of British plasterwork. Plasterwork created within this period is often full of delightful surprises, with an extraordinary range of techniques and materials employed. It is within this context that the plasterwork of both Hannah and Robert Lorimer are best understood.

During the course of the talk we will first explore Hannah Lorimer's surviving decorative schemes at the House of Falkland, comparing her approach with those of others executed within the property during the same period. The second half of the talk will focus on Robert Lorimer's plasterwork designs and specifications for Marchmont House tracing the architects relationships with David Fisher & Sons, Samuel Wilson and Thomas Beattie and exploring their specific contributions to the project.

Harriet Blakeman: 'The ‘Cunning Artificer’, James Bennet of Arncroach, Blacksmith and Vet'

This short talk will explore the life and work of James Bennett, one of the craftsmen from Arncroach employed by Robert Lorimer. Alongside the joiner and furniture maker William Wheeler and the embroidering postmistress, Jeannie Skinner, the ‘handicrafts of Arncroach’ enjoyed a brief celebrity. Bennett was responsible for some of the ironwork at Kellie Castle, and even enjoyed royal patronage from Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll.

Lorimer himself designed major alterations to Bennet’s home Lundie House in Arncroach. Bennett not only gave form to some of Lorimer’s Arts & Crafts designs but was also interested in science and technology. In his youth, he had enrolled at the University of Edinburgh to become a veterinary surgeon but gave up due to ill health. Throughout his life he combined the roles of local blacksmith and country vet.

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