Guernsey Tapestry

Fragment of the Guernsey Tapestry. Fragment of the Guernsey Tapestry.

The Guernsey tapestry is a commemorative embroidery illustrating one thousand years of Guernsey (Channel Islands, UK) history. It is officially known as the Bailiwick of Guernsey Millennium tapestry (BGMT).

In 1995, Susan Payne, a contemporary textile artist living on Guernsey, suggested the idea of the embroidery at a public meeting. It was regarded as a fitting reminder of the Millennium celebrations, as it was a project that would depict Guernsey history and involve the whole community. Valerie Chandler carried out the initial art work, while Jenneth Fitzgerald was appointed as co-ordinator (yarn, cloth, colours, stitchers, etc.).

The tapestry consists of ten panels (each 1.22 x 0.91 m), one for each of the ten Guernsey parishes. Each panel covers one hundred years of history and depicts important local events and information about buildings, costumes and other aspects of local history. Around the edge of each panel is a text in Guernesiais (Guernsey-French), a Norman language. Work on the panels took place between September 1996 and December 1998 and involved 215 embroiderers using twelve basic stitches. In addition, as many families, schools, institutions as possible were involved in the production of the panels. People could also sponsor a stitch (£1 per stitch). Each panel took about one year to make.

In February 1999, the States of Guernsey declared the Bailiwick of Guernsey Millennium Tapestry to be an official Millennium project and a grant was given for its permanent home in a purpose-built gallery in the Dorey Centre, next to St. James the Less, a nineteenth century church.

Digital source (retrieved 9 March 2016).

Digital source of illustration (retrieved 5 June 2016).


Last modified on Wednesday, 19 April 2017 13:58