Eskbank House and Museum played host to an eclectic range of local producers on Saturday 15 April for an ‘Artisan’s Picnic’ and Seven Valleys Live and Local joint event.

This event highlighted the work of sculptors, painters, baristas, chefs, sound technicians, circus performers, as well as musicians in the surroundings of the Eskbank House rich historical artefacts and architecture.

EchoStorm Productions’ Peter B. Francis created soundscapes to allow the sonic serenades of Dane Charlton, Restless Murphy and James Daley to whisk listeners away under the shade of the grounds’ beautiful trees while children (and the childish at heart) practised their juggling or hoola-hoop skills with glee. All the while, the scents of CafeBar 128’s brisket burgers and T.J. Rollaway’s coffee filled the air. Visitors took guided tours through Eskbank House and Museum – led through the stable, blacksmith’s shop, display house and the 1850s garden by the venue’s knowledgeable volunteers; along the way encountering art installations, such as Tim Johnman’s stunning rabbit sculpture or Le Grizz’s bold Black Rose.

The concept of ‘Artisan’s Picnic’ came by way of identifying the need for a community gathering where families, arts lovers, those who enjoy gorgeous gardens, enjoyers of history and patrons of delicious meals or caffeine connoisseurs could come together in a location of relaxation and equality. The event indeed achieved such calm successes, largely due to the immaculate space which is Eskbank House; and it all occurred under the warmth of a greatly appreciated clear autumn’s sky. From wee ones to elders, the energy of all attendees and contributors unanimously sang the songs of contentment.