Press Release, September 1st 2015

Marine artist Reuben Chappell, known as the Pierhead Painter of Goole, East Yorkshire at work in his studioSchooner Alice Louisa in full sailMaking life better for our port town with Goole Civic Society

Reuben Chappell Art Trail launch

A permanent outdoor art trail featuring replica paintings of sailing ships and steam vessels will be launched in Goole, East Yorkshire, as part of the Heritage Open Days celebration in September.

Goole Civic Society has created the trail to celebrate the town’s renowned “Pierhead Painter” Reuben Chappell and to make people more aware of the inland port’s rich maritime heritage.

It will be launched officially on Friday September 11th at an event attended by Reuben Chappell’s great grandson, David Dixon, who will be travelling from Cornwall. Freddie Gick, Chair of Civic Voice, the national movement for Civic Societies, will also travel to the town for the occasion.

Other guests will include: Goole MP Andrew Percy, East Riding of Yorkshire Council Chairman Coun Peter Turner and his Lady, Mrs Dorothy Turner; East Riding Council Leader Coun Stephen Parnaby OBE; the Mayor and Mayoress of Goole, Coun Ian Blackburn and Mrs Jacqui Blackburn; and the Chair of Yorkshire and Humber Association of Civic Societies, Kevin Trickett.

The launch, at the Lowther Hotel in Aire Street, is part of Goole Civic Society’s contribution to Heritage Open Days, when thousands of volunteers across the country will invite people to experience local history, architecture and culture.

Free trail guide books will be permanently available in Goole Library, Museum and other locations from the day of the launch and Civic Society members will lead walks around the trail at 11am and 2pm on Saturday and Sunday, September 12th and 13th.

As a curtain-raiser to the launch, Janet Tierney, former Goole Museum Curator and Reuben Chappell expert, will give a talk about the artist at Goole Museum at 3pm on Thursday September 10th. All are welcome.

The trail has been funded by East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s High Street Fund, which aims to revitalise high streets and improve town centres. Other donations have come from the Business in Goole group and a local benefactor who wishes to remain anonymous.

Reuben Chappell was born in Goole in 1870 and made a living by painting pictures of sailing and steam ships that visited the docks, taking commissions from ships’ captains and crew. He later moved to Cornwall and became one of the best and most prolific ship’s portrait artists, painting more than 12,000 pictures of vessels from all over northern Europe during his lifetime.

Use of his paintings for reproduction is being provided by Goole Museum, which houses a large Reuben Chappell collection, and by Goole-based shipbroker Peter Aarosin, whose grandfather left him a Chappell painting that he commissioned in 1910.

The Chair of Goole Civic Society, Margaret Hicks-Clarke, said: "The Reuben Chappell Art Trail aims to celebrate the port town of Goole's fascinating maritime heritage.

"In Reuben Chappell's day, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the docks would have been bustling with sailing ships and steam vessels like the ones depicted. Each location also has a special significance in the town's history.

"The Civic Society is very grateful to the East Riding Council High Street Fund and Goole businesses for helping us make the trail a reality."



John Clarke, Press Officer, Goole Civic Society – 07976 147239;

Margaret Hicks-Clarke, Chair - 07841 802030