Jackie loves to paint, to read and to write and has written many children’s books. Her deep love of the natural world - the landscape, the seascape, the seals and birds - wove themselves together into the story The Seal Children.
The story is about a fisherman who falls in love with a selkie, a magical creature, a seal in the water and a woman on land. In most legends, if a man can capture the skin of a selkie she will make the perfect wife, and as long as he can hide her skin away from her she will have to stay with him. Inevitably the skin is found and she returns to the sea for the sake of her freedom.
Maes y Mynydd is the setting for the village in The Seal Children. This ruined village lies behind a high ridge of rock to the north of St Davids, not far from Whitesands Beach and St Davids Head.
Once a small and busy community, the villagers were fishermen and farmers, the cottages tied to the rich farms over the hill. In the later years of the life of the village the people who lived there were thought to be Quakers, escaping from religious intolerance on the other side of the hill.
By the turn of the century the village was empty and after that the houses were occasionally used by itinerant workers. Stones were taken away, roofs fell in, and now all that remains are the ruins of a few cottages. The fields are still farmed and the walls surrounding the small gardens of the houses can still be seen.
Why not purchase a signed copy of this beautifully illustrated book and visit the site of this haunting tale? Books are available for sale from Solva Woollen Mill where several of Jackie’s paintings are also on display.
c/o Solva Woollen Mill 01437 721112
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