Tapestry Masters the Snows of New Lanark ...
Annual Touring Programme Gets Under Way at New Lanark
The fourth annual tour of the Battle of Prestonpans Tapestry got under way this week at New Lanark World Heritage Village. The eighteenth and nineteenth century mills, and the rows of charming cottage which housed their workers, formed a fascinating setting for the exhibition.
Nestled in the a wooded valley beside the roaring Falls of Clyde, you are stepping back in time as you descend to the village. Today its story is told in an engaging visitor centre and the chance to visit a worker's house and the home of the mills visionary founder-owner, Robert Owen. It was Owen who transformed the lives of his workers by creating a sense of community betterment and improved living standards, establishing a school whose classroom can still be seen. There was even an Institute for the Formation of Character!
What better place for the Tapestry than that...
Until 9th April The Musician's Room of the Institute is displaying The Prestonpans Tapestry, close by the main visitor centre entrance. The room was originally used for dances and functions as well as reading classes, all designed for the benefit of those living and working at New Lanark. It is a wonderful bright room with stunning views across the river.
Visitors also get the chance to watch the official films of the Tapestry, alternating between the Animated film and Stitches for Charlie. The usual range of Tapestry merchandise is of course available at reception.
On Monday heavy snow both east and west delayed the Tapestry getting through to New Lanark, but the sudden improvement meant everything was up and running by Tuesday. The site looked beautiful under its blanket of snow, but we hadn't thought to take our cameras so missed out on recording the moment for you. Imagine how delighted(!) we therefore were when the snow began to fall again during our visit yesterday! Visitors remained undaunted however, braving the large flakes and heavy skies to enjoy the Tapestry.
Arran Johnston was on hand to guide interested visitors around the Tapestry's highlights in between chances to admire the snow-covered vistas from the large windows on three sides of the gallery. Guided tours around the Tapestry will be available again on 30th March.
Alan Brecks will add lustre with their usual charm on April 6th
Always eager to perform at an historic location, the Alan Breck's Regiment will be visiting on the 6th April, celebrating the final weekend of the exhibition by occupying the village with Redcoats in the search not only for recruits to defend King George's crown, but also to seek out the Jacobite spies rumoured to be lurking nearby: be sure to head along that day to see if they succeed in arresting them!
So all in all we're kicking off this year's tour with the usual mix of great locations and fun events. It is great to see the Tapestry - which itself was born from a sense of community identity and pride - displayed in a place not only famed for its role in Scotland's historic textile industry, but which was also designed specifically for the improvement of the people of who lived and worked there.
Published Date: March 18th 2013