In 2004 Stanley Services Limited agreed to purchase the Malvina House Hotel which had been ably owned and operated by Mr Mike Rendel since the 1980’s.
We were determined to build on the excellent work undertaken by Mike and have subsequently invested substantially to make it the Falkland Islands premier hotel.
As part of this investment the Company recognised the need to increase the number of bedrooms from 17 to 36 – these were completed in January 2010. During the design of these rooms we wanted them to be modern, comfortable, light and environmentally friendly but with a “Falkland Flavour” to remind all our guests that they are in a very special location of the world.
I have had the fortune to know Richard Cockwell since 1987 and a few years ago we were both sitting in a meeting and I noticed that he had drawn a very elaborate “doodle”. After the meeting we discussed his love of painting and I asked him to paint for me what I think is one of the most iconic landmarks on the Islands – The Cape Pembroke Lighthouse. Richard in his usual modest manner doubted that I would like it; needless to say it was a fantastic painting and I am very proud of it. Richard also painted some landscapes which hang in our bar and lounge.
When we were discussing the new extension Richard came up with the idea that each room should be named after a Falkland location and he would paint the relevant landscapes. This involved a great deal of work, effort and skill by Richard but as I am sure you will agree he has produced twenty exquisite paintings which give exactly the Falkland flavour that we were seeking for our new bedrooms. We also hope that you find Sarah Clement’s and Lisa Johnston’s brief history of the important sites reflected in Richard’s art helpful.
I was very fortunate to see all the paintings prior to them being hung in each of the new rooms and I thought it would be a good idea if they could be shown all together in a book so that people from all over the world could enjoy Richard’s creative paintings of The Falkland Islands.
I hope you will enjoy this book which can purchased direct from the Company in the Falkland Islands.
Stanley Services Limited
Richard Cockwell was born in England in 1939 and raised in Hampshire and Wiltshire within an agricultural setting. He was educated at Stanbridge Earls School in Hampshire.
In 1964 he was employed by Packe Brothers and Company Limited of Fox Bay East, Falkland Islands, as Assistant Manager of their 150,000 acre sheep farm.Richard became Manager of the farm in 1967 and was living there during the Falklands Conflict of 1982.
In 1985 Richard built and opened the Falkland Mill designed to process Falklands’ wool into yarn and knitwear. Although the mill produced an attractive product it closed due to the high cost of energy and labour.
In 1997 after a brief period of running a road building project sponsored by the Government, as well as developing a graphic design business in Fox Bay, he was elected as a Member of the Legislative Council for the Camp Constituency. After moving to Stanley in 2001 he was elected as a Stanley Councillor.
Richard is now retired but continues to paint. In 2009 he was commissioned by Stanley Services Ltd. to produce a series of watercolour landscapes to hang in the new rooms of Malvina.
Richard notes that having been interested in art in all of its forms since school, “…it seems strange that I did not indulge except for a few sessions of once a week night classes in wood carving (he has a carving of a mother and child in Whiteparish church in Wiltshire) when in my early 20s.
“Having lived in the Falklands for a number of years I was only too aware of the magnificent scenery that I wished to record.
“However, being busy managing a 150,000 acre sheep station and latterly attempting to establish a wool mill, I did nothing further.
“After being elected to the Legislative Council, I was in Britain for meetings and found myself with two weeks free. I decided that I did not want to sit on a beach for that time so – it being my sixtieth birthday – decided to take a painting holiday in the South of France. This holiday course was run by the accomplished artist David McEwen.
“David encouraged me and I became an avid watercolourist.”
View Richard’s watercolour paintings.
Please note all paintings are subject to copyright and must not be copied without permission of the Artist.