Church tapestries to be weaved for 2013

One of the tapestries made in the style.
One of the tapestries made in the style.
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A new project is allowing everyone in Derry the chance to make their own mark on history as part of a unique St Columba themed project this summer.

The Big Weave will see the creation of seven new tapestries in a three-week period in June which will then be donated to the city as part of the legacy of 2013.

The project is being run by St Augustine’s Church on the historic Derry walls.

Three looms are being brought to the St Augustine’s church hall to create the tapestries – although they will be taken out into the city during the three weeks to help in the creation of truly citywide pieces of artwork.

The finishing touches are being put to the final designs for the tapestries, six of which will be presented to different organisations which all share strong connections to the church or the city.

They are: St Columb’s Cathedral, The Long Tower, The Apprentice Boys, First Derry Presbyterian Church, Derry City Council and The Honourable The Irish Society.

“We want all sorts of people to come together to weave these tapestries together as a city,” said Rev Pat Story of St Augustine’s.

“Our hope is that this will bring people of all denominations and none together to weave tapestries that will then be left to these various bodies in the city as a legacy.”

One main tapestry – on the theme of Columba heading into exile from the site of the church – will measure six feet by three feet and it will remain on site at St Augustine’s.

The other six will be smaller tapestries measuring three feet and two and a half feet each and will be woven on two smaller looms; the ones which will also be taken out into the city.

Work on the seven tapestries will begin in June when everyone in the city will be invited to come along and contribute to the growing pieces of artwork.

Trained volunteers will be on hand to help members of the public who want to take part.

Last year more than 18,000 visitors from all over the world visited St Augustine’s – a number set to increase during the City of Culture year – and they too will be welcome to contribute their own work.

Everyone who contributes will be invited to leave their thoughts which will be exhibited in the plaza of The Playhouse during July.

Further Big Weave-related projects are planned by St Augustine’s for later in the year and details will be released soon.

Funding for the project was provided by The Culture Company, Derry City Council, The Church of Ireland Priorities Fund and The Honourable The Irish Society.