NICK HAWKER (d.2006)
Nick Hawker was a man of many talents; designer, constructor, actor and even, on occasion, for some of the other drama groups he belonged to, a director. I first worked with him when we co-designed the set for Little Women (1997) which had just returned from the Minack. Most of my early knowledge of how to construct ladder flats and hang doors on a set were passed on to me by Nick. He could seem a bit distant on first meeting and he had a disconcerting habit of never seeming to answer any of my questions. Just when I had begun to think he hadn't heard me or was ignoring the question he would turn and say, "hmm, yes...," and give a full explanation. I soon adjusted to this time lag and we spent many Sunday mornings flat bashing.
Outside The Questors he worked as a picture framer, but not just any old pictures, more the vast gilded efforts that surround national treasures in places like the National Gallery. He used to tell some highly entertaining stories about visiting the basements of some of these institutions and finding the odd Constable propped against a wall, and naturally any picture frames which appeared on any of his Questors shows looked wonderful.
At The Questors he designed, co-designed and built, often single handedly, many epic structures. His co-design with John Norwood for The Bright and Bold Design in 1998 stands as a good example; not to mention the beautiful car, train, boat and caravan which he made for The Wind in the Willows (2000), which earned him the title among the production team of "General Transport Manager."
He will be missed for we sorely need craftsmen like Nick today.