Touring exhibition at Friends House, Euston

21 panels, 532 miles, 11 days, 1,524 visitors, 550 hours of volunteer time.

We are back, and unpacked, from our final touring exhibition of 2017. We would like to say thank you to all who helped make the Quaker Tapestry in London a success. All due to the fantastic community effort and collaboration between our hosts at Friends House, Euston and North West London Quakers. This advance work was at a time when the staff at Friends House were very busy with preparations for the Summer Gathering which took place the week before the Roadshow.

There had been many months in the planning and organisation for this event. Meeting, collaborating and communicating for the publicity. Organising people to volunteer their time as exhibition stewards. Hosting our visiting volunteers. Not to mention the fundraising! We couldn’t have done it without you all. A huge hug to over 40 volunteers who, between them, generously gave their time. Visitors had such an enjoyable experience because of you!

In 2016, Paul Grey (Head of Hospitality), mentioned to us that the The Light (the large Meeting House) in Friends House was free for two weeks in August 2017 and he asked whether the Quaker Tapestry might be interested in using it for a Roadshow… we jumped at the opportunity, but needed some local help to get things underway…

Robert Clark and Susan Costello are two Friends, and members, who have been great ambassadors of the Tapestry. When we contacted them to ask for their help in coordinating things from the local meeting in London they did so willingly and worked very hard to ensure that this event was a success. Grateful thanks to them and the wider Quaker community who found the finance to support the venture and helped to pull it all together so professionally.

From the moment we arrived at Friends House, we were welcomed and feel privileged to have been part of the team. Their beautiful building, full of friendship and light, has been the perfect venue for this community based exhibition.

Our Taster workshop on Saturday 12th August was a lovely way to share the stitches. Thanks to Carole Butcher, who helped with the teaching of 15 students. Carole also helped share The Dunera Boys story, giving insight into the way the tapestry panels were researched and produced. This also shows that the Tapestry project will never be complete – it continues to inspire.

Listening to the visitors’ comments was a pleasure. Here are a few of the responses in the visitors’ book, which are a reminder of a wonderful experience….

“All those busy hands and all those hearts and all that creativity” 

“Walking through this exhibition feels like peaceful meditation”

“What a wonderful record of the work of Quakers over centuries for peace and justice”

“We were entranced not only by the Tapestry panels and the social history on display but also by the ambience of the Meeting House, the interpretation and information made available to us. It is a very good memory for us.”

Sutton Coldfield Ladies’ Gardening Club