Why Whitby jeweller W Hamond has giant herring suspended above doorway

There’s something fishy going on at W Hamond The Original Whitby Jet Shop.

By Duncan Atkins
Monday, 1st August 2022, 10:17 am

Passers-by may have noticed a giant herring suspended above the jewellers’ iconic doorway at the foot of the 199 Steps on Church Street.

The installation follows the popular heritage sculpture trail featuring Whitby’s sons and daughters positioned around the town in an immersive and inspiring walk put together by Whitby artist Emma Stothard.

Emma specialises in wire and willow weaving and recently teamed up with W Hamond to create an additional jewellery collection to go alongside her work.

Some of W Hamond's silver darlings jewellery collection.

The collection is inspired by one of the trail's main themes; Silver Darlings, the nick-name given to herrings due to their value to the fishing industry in the late 19th and early 20th Century.

The large willow sculpture, which is designed to look like a giant pendant, had its debut recently at the Great Yorkshire Show.

It took centre stage in front of W Hamond’s stand in what was their 20th year at the show - introducing a new customer base to Emma’s work and W Hamond’s accompanying jewellery collection, crafted in sterling silver with a mixture of colourful gemstone floats, including Whitby jet.

W Hamond’s jeweller and jet worker Rebecca Tucker said: “The jewellery goes together so well with Emma’s iconic sculptures.

Emma Stothard's herring sculpture which is suspended above the doorway of W Hamond jewellers on Whitby's Church Street.

“When she approached us to collaborate, it just seemed like a natural fit.

"I also loved that her work was inspired by the Herring Girls, the hard-working women who prepared and packaged the fish, following the herring fleet as it worked its way down from Scotland to Lowestoft.

"The sculpture on the front of the Hamond’s building is a testament to how proud we are of this collection and local partnership.”