Ref no40214
TitlePapers of Doris K Flinn, sculptor, and Joan Tuckett, actress, of East Dundry, near Bristol. Also a typescript copy of the diary of Ellen Sharples, painter.
Date1760 - 1977 (predominantly 1890s - 1940s)
DescriptionSketchbooks and notebooks, photographs (including photographs, with titles, of Doris Flinn's original artwork), diaries, correspondence, press cuttings, funeral orations.
Extent6 boxes; 1 roll (186 items)
Administrative historyDoris Flinn (1892 - 1977) and Joan Tuckett (1895 - 1957)

Born in Chorlton, Lancashire, Doris Flinn was involved with the Halle Orchestra in her late teenage years, before she took up the study of art in Manchester. She moved to Bristol in the mid 1910s, living and working with the Tuckett family before moving to Dundry with Joan in the 1930s, where she would have more room to make her art work. During the 1920s she worked from a studio in Boyce's Avenue, Clifton, which also doubled as an exhibition space for her work on occasion, as well as a period spent working for Bristol Potteries. Her work was widely exhibited, including shows at the Royal Academies in Manchester, Bristol and London, and at Paris as part of the International Exposition of Modern Industrial and Decorative Art of 1925. Like Joan, she was politically active as a member of the communist party and sat on the Bristol Committee of the Defence of Spanish Democracy, and her politics sometimes found expression in her art work , such as her series of panel reliefs, 'In England's Green and Pleasant Land'.

Joan Tuckett was the eldest child of Bristol solicitor, Richard Tuckett and the niece of Enid Stacy, a famous socialist and campaigner for women's rights. Her sister was Angela Tuckett (whose archive is held by the Working Class Movement Library in Salford). According to the oratory given at Joan's funeral, she began teaching and producing plays in Manchester, following theatrical tours of the United States. By 1937 she was organising the amateur dramatic society, the Bristol Unity Players' Club, the records of which are kept at Warwick University Modern Records Centre (reference MSS.212), and her 1942 production of 'Distant Point' by A.N. Afrinogenev raised the first £80 in the fight to save Bristol's Theatre Royal for the Bristol Old Vic. A committed socialist, she 'was very active at the time of the Spanish Civil War', joining the Communist Party in 1938, of which she was a member until her death.

Doris and Joan moved to The Rookery, East Dundry, Bristol BS18 8NJ in the early 1930s, where Doris would have room to make her art work. They were later joined by Bridget Josephine Fitzsimon who helped care for Joan, who suffered from rheumatoid arthritis.
Access statusOpen
Access conditionsNone
ArrangementClass levels within each sub-collection are arranged according record type - photographs, notebooks, press cuttings, correspondence etc. These series have not been completely artificially imposed, but largely reflect the way items were found to have been grouped together, prior to deposit. Where items have occasionally been removed from their original position for the purposes of catalogue arrangement, a note of their original position has been included in the catalogue so that the original order could be re-constructed if required. The catalogue is based on ISAD(G) 2nd edition.
Related materialThree art works by Doris Flinn are held within Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery collections, object numbers Na1292, Na1293 and N8320. (See online museum catalogue:
Custodial historyThe collection was deposited by Mrs G. O'Rourke following the death of Bridget Josephine Fitzsimon, in her capacity as exectuor. Bridget Josephine Fitzsimon lived with Doris and Joan for many years. Following the death of Joan, Bridget continued to live (with her brother Gerard) at The Rookery as the friend and carer of Doris Flinn, remaining there after Doris's death.
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