Celebrating Windsor’s community heroes

Published: Wednesday, 11th July 2018

Windsor People

A celebration of the dedicated community members who help make Windsor work has been created in the town centre.

Photographer Derek Reay produced portraits of some of the key members of the Windsor community for his new book Windsor People Revisited which follows up on a collection he published 10 years ago.

Now images from the new portrait collection are decorating temporary hoardings around York House on Sheet Street while the building is refurbished.

The portrait collection celebrates everyone from head teachers to street cleaners, brewers, vets and the former mayor.

Cllr Samantha Rayner, cabinet member for culture and communities (inc. customer and business services), said: “Derek’s excellent book captures the people who help make Windsor such a fantastic community.

“The portraits recognise the hugely valued and unassuming heroes who make Windsor a fabulous place to live, work and enjoy.

“While York House is being refurbished we saw it as the perfect opportunity to celebrate the town and the people who make it.”

In 2008 Derek decided to feature working Windsor people in his exhibition at the Windsor Fringe Festival.

He said: “The original book, 100 People who make Windsor Work, was made after that exhibition and proved to be very popular.

“I wanted to try and feature as wide a cross-section of people and occupations as possible and so it was a question of listing all those who made a rounded community.

“These are people who will bring you into this world, feed you both physically and spiritually, educate you, keep you healthy, and in the end send you to rest.

“As years passed I thought that it would be interesting to revisit the 100 People and 2018 seemed the obvious time. This time however I will publish a book as part of the exhibition.

“I approached Martin Denny, the Windsor Festival manager, who agreed it would be an interesting addition to the festival programme in September.

“Only about 30 per cent of the 2008 people are still in the same occupations, the remainder having either retired or moved on; a few have sadly died.

“However, these places have been filled with other occupations, although I am fully aware that it takes more than 100 people to make Windsor work!

“The project is an interesting social documentary of our town and I am particularly pleased the Royal Borough has agreed to feature some of the images on the hoardings outside the York House building site.”

The proposals for the redeveloped York House include a multi-functional hub for residents and improved accommodation for council staff.

The hoardings will remain in place during the refurbishment which is due to finish by the end of the year.

A limited number of copies of Windsor People Revisited will be available alongside the exhibition at this year’s Windsor Festival.

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