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Enthusiastic Welcome in Walton on Thames for the Prestonpans Tapestry

No! No panel of our's has been stolen! This is the Prestonpans Tapestry [# 1/ July 2010], not the Great Other One or even our own Scottish Diaspora Tapestry - which is in Paris this month!

That theft was on everyone's lips, with surprise and deep sadness which we of course share. We were in Walton on Thames at the Robert Phillip's Gallery of The RiverBarn, with Arran Johnston giving his now customary masterful Opening Talk on the Battle of Prestonpans to a grand audience in The Barn proper.

On display from the outset is the story as far as the taking of Edinburgh. In two weeks time the balance of the events leading to the battle itself, its aftermath and the eventual march into England will be on display. [We have done this Part 1/ Part 2 approach on several occasions now, in contradistinction to the Safari Approach where it's simultaneous but in separate rooms, even venues.]

Why Walton on Thames?

The Arts Team at Walton on Thames' brilliant community gallery and barn, in the grounds of Sir Arthur Sullivan's former home, have been inspired by what we've been about in Scotland. Their Director Emily Boulting first saw The Prestonpans Tapestry in St Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh ... and when the theme for their 'own' artwork emerged got in touch with Andrew Crummy to design it for them.

It's going to be at least 20 metres long, stitched with Appleton's wools, to a well familiar template 500mm x 500mm, and will tell the story of local Mount Felix Hospital in World War I - which was devoted to treating wounded New Zealanders from the Gallipoli Campaign and more. We saw one of the first drawings whilst wool colour selection was going on!

Having our Prestonpans Tapestry on display, says Emily, is intended as a great motivator .. you know, if they can do it so can we!

But back to the Prestonpans Tapestry Exhibition ..

For insiders, it was another first, although it's the 50 something exhibition .. it's the first time the new cardboard containers have been deployed. Custom made in Musselburgh no less! They feature in the pictures too ...

The Gallery's full details are linked DIRECTLY HERE

Part 1 - Wednesday 14 October - Sunday 1 November Part 2 - Tuesday 3 November - Sunday 15 November

The Prestonpans Tapestry is a ground-breaking community arts project completed in 2010. Inspired by Bonnie Prince Charlie's doomed attempt to claim the British throne in 1745 and by his remarkable and unexpected victory at Prestonpans, the tapestry was embroidered by over 200 volunteers across Scotland. Totalling 105m, the project created not only a stunning visual narrative of the Prince's campaign but also a lasting legacy which continues to inspire new community projects around the country. We will be showing the Tapestry in two halves due to its size, so we advise at least two visits to the gallery!

Wednesday 14 October 7pm: Opening Day Talk

Discover the fascinating story of this inspirational community arts project at a special illustrated talk by Arran Johnston, historian to the Battle of Prestonpans Heritage Trust, with Dr Gordon Prestoungrange MBE, Baron of Prestoungrange, founding Chairman of the Battle of Prestonpans Trust.

This exhibition and accompanying talks are supported by the Charity of Robert Phillips

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 10am - 4pm and Sunday 11am - 4pm .... Venue
Robert Phillips Gallery
Riverhouse Arts Centre
Manor Road,Walton on Thames
Surrey, KT12 2PF

P.S. Any visitors fascinated by contemporary tapesties should also make a point of going along to see the Millennium Tapestry at neighbouring Sunbury on Thames

Published Date: October 17th 2015

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