Every time I passed over the bridge at Derryinver, Renvyle – I would look to the sea and think- I have to paint there.
Last week I stopped there again and realised while reading the plaque and information story that in a few days time, on the 21st of September, it would be 130 years to the day since the tragic death of Geraldine Gilbert Henry occurred there. She was the third daughter of Mitchell and Margaret Henry of nearby Kylemore Castle.The story really gripped my imagination. While driving a carriage along the narrow road, her horse bolted and she was thrown into the river and drowned. Imagining the terrible scene – the uncontrollable speed of the horse and carriage going over the bumpy road, the noise of the wheels crunching on the stones, the realisation that she was going to crash and there was nothing to do now to stop it…Today, 21st September, also a Wednesday, I am starting a painting of the now peaceful scene in memory of the young woman who died there at the age of 27, married and with a baby daughter Elizabeth. The letter fragment shown on the Information board below is especially poignant. Her husband and family distraught, Mitchell Henry put the castle and estate up for sale two years later.