Painting of iconic Sycamore Gap donated to campsite near Hadrian’s Wall

A PASTEL painting immortalising the iconic Sycamore Gap has been donated to a popular five-star campsite which had an extremely close affinity with the world-famous tree.

Herding Hill Farm Camping and Glamping Site, near Haltwhistle, is located so close to the tree that the business uses it as the main feature in its logo.

There was a global outcry of sadness and anger when the tree, which famously featured in the Hollywood film Robin Hood and the Prince of Thieves, was felled overnight in September. Police investigations to find the culprits are still ongoing.

Helen Foster, centre, presents her painting of Sycamore Gap to Herding Hill Farm Camping and Glamping Site managers Phil and Sue Humphreys.

The sadness has been felt most by the Northumberland communities along Hadrian’s Wall, so Herding Hill Farm, which is owned by WCF, was delighted to be offered a painting of the tree to proudly adorn its walls in exchange for a donation to the charity of the artist’s choice.

Helen Foster, who works as a garment technologist in one of WCF’s other businesses at their Brampton base, picked up the pastels for the first time in five years following the felling of Sycamore Gap, and is proud to see the painting bringing so much joy to the campsite’s owners and guests.

She said: “When I saw the sad news that Sycamore Gap had been chopped down and how much the tree meant to people, it prompted me to start painting again even though I usually specialise in pet portraits, and never landscape.

“When I shared the image of my painting with my work colleagues, I was really touched about how many people said they loved it and wanted a print of it, and I offered the original painting to Herding Hill Farm which has a strong link to the tree.

“I’m proud that I’m playing a small part in keeping the legacy of Sycamore Gap alive as my painting will be hanging in the reception at Herding Hill Farm for everyone to see.”

Jo Ritzema, the Managing Director of WCF.

Jo Ritzema, who is Managing Director of WCF, said: “When I saw Helen’s painting, I was blown away by how stunning it was and I felt it would act as the perfect permanent reminder of Sycamore Gap to everybody who visits Herding Hill Farm.

“To some, it may have just been a tree, but to our guests and many more across the world it was important to the local landscape and it helped put the area on the global map, and it’s great that its memory will live on forever through initiatives like this. I was also touched to see the camaraderie between our two very different WCF businesses as a result of the painting.”

WCF made a donation to Helen’s chosen charity Lost Dogs Dumfries and Galloway in exchange for the painting.

Herding Hill Farm is part of the WCF employee-owned family of businesses which operates across the UK in the leisure, retail and logistics sectors. The site is one of three five-star camping and glamping businesses operated by WCF, with sister sites at Drummohr, just 10 miles from Edinburgh on the shores of the Firth of Forth, and Longnor Wood in the heart of the Peak District.

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