Tontine Street drawing

“They looked like silver birds.  The sun was shining on them…” is a drawing about the victims of a bomb which exploded next to a queue of people outside of Stokes Bros greengrocers during The Great Folkestone Air Raid of 25th May 1917.  It consists of sixty-eight gesso panels containing transcriptions of personal memories, the details of each of the people who were killed and silverpoint drawings of some of the individuals who died.  The title comes from an eye witness account of the event and refers to the sight of the German ‘Gotha’ bombers high up in the early evening sun light just moments before the bomb was dropped.  I’ve been working on this subject, off and on, for a few years.  I created an earlier version of it for my solo exhibition at Marine Studios in Margate last year.


Click on the images for a closer look at these drawings and scroll up and down the ‘Home Page’ or the ‘Tontine Street Drawings’ page to find more about this work.  You can also see it on ‘youtube’ by searching for ‘Roy Eastland Drawing’.


3 thoughts on “Tontine Street drawing”

  1. As a relative of a family affected by this I feel sad that I didn’t know about this project and it being exhibited at galleries. I have just found out about it due to a friend having a distant memory of my families history

    1. I’ll be showing some work in a group exhibition at The Pie Factory in Margate from 22nd July until about the 3rd August (I’ll be invigilating there on Sunday 31st July and Monday 1st August). I’m hoping to be able to hang my Tontine Street piece in the exhibition and so if you if you’re in Margate while the exhibition is on pop in and have a look/chat. This project is ongoing but the amount of work I can do on it is always limited by time and money and so it’s off-and-on and very gradual. Do you have any family memories connected with the air raid or the people who were there at the time?

    2. Hello Shirley. There will be a memorial event in Folkestone on Thursday. The local historian Martin Easdown and descendant of one of the victims Margaret Care have organised an event which will include an exhibition, a memorial service, an unveiling of a new plaque and a walking tour. If you’re in Folkestone on Thursday then it’ll start with a small exhibition from 2pm at the Folkestone Methodist Church on Sandgate Road (CT20 2DA). I’ll post something about it soon.

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