DURHAM Cathedral has revealed the name of a new stained glass window glass window to be installed in memory of a student who died suddenly.

Sara Pilkington, who was a student at Durham University, died suddenly from a cardiac-related condition in February 2012 and would have celebrated her 27th birthday today.

The Illumination Window, designed by glass artist, Mel Howse, is being donated by her parents Jonathan and Jools Pilkington, will express and interpret qualities she embodied; spirituality, beauty, colour, learning and light.

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Sara Pilkington, a member of Collingwood College, died during her final year studying Combined Arts (BA Hons). Her parents have worked closely with Mel Howse and staff at Durham Cathedral, including the cathedral’s conservation architect Chris Cotton of the firm Purcell, to develop the window design. Her parents said: “Our wish has always been to install within the cathedral a lasting memorial to our beautiful daughter in a place she loved so much.”

As human beings, we each take our own journey of learning and we hope that by expressing this acquisition of knowledge and understanding through a beautiful work of art, the Illumination Window will be something in which everyone from children and students to adults can find meaning.”

Chichester-based glass artist Mel Howse has spent the last six months working on a 24 square metre full-size artwork for the new window. The cartoon was recently revealed to the cathedral team and to Jonathan and Jools Pilkington. It was a thrilling moment where the detailed design was seen at its full scale for the first time, marking the transition to commencing the glass work.

Mel is a designer and maker, bringing with her 25 years of experience in creating progressive and contemporary architectural glasswork.

The Illumination Window will be installed close to the Feretory in the Cathedral’s North Quire Aisle providing a physical link to Durham University, which was founded by the Cathedral in 1832 and upon whose buildings the window looks.

Nave Canon of the Cathedral and Chair of the Durham World Heritage site management committee, Rosalind Brown, said: “ We are hugely grateful to Jonathan and Jools for their generous gift and ongoing commitment to this project and look forward to the installation later this year of what will be a very poignant work of art and one which will bring glory to God, who is the source of all illumination, and contribute to the beauty and meaning of our magnificent cathedral.”