August

Coventry’s Medieval Drapery – new archaeological evidence!

August 22, 2019
In July, Museum of London Archaeology (MOLA) completed excavations behind Drapers’ Hall in advance of the restoration and reopening of the hall as a classical music venue. Finds included a 15th-century workshop for making metal dress accessories such as buckles and brooches, together with a number of stone moulds for casting metal. The site lay to the north of the areas excavated in 1988–9, the results of which are yet to be published. Medieval Coventry is working with MOLA to combine the results of the two excavations and publish the results. An initial assessment of the 1980s site archive held at the Herbert Museum has yielded positive results, including perfectly preserved soil samples, which include seeds, plant remains, animal hair, animal bones and other environmental material that will tell us about farming in the surrounding countryside and the diet of people of medieval Coventry. More information can be found on MOLA’s website: www.mola.org.uk/blog/buttons-cloth-and-metalwork-drapers%E2%80%99-hall-excavation-uncovers-long-tradition-industry-coventry

St Mary’s Hall Tapestry Conference – experts analyse the tapestry

August 22, 2019
In advance of the conference headed by David Starkey on 27 September, a number of experts have taken a close look at the tapestry. Among them was Mika Takami from the Hampton Court tapestry conservation team and she will be reporting on her findings at the conference. The tapestry has been well preserved under the current high-quality casing which is now nearly 20 years old. The ideal scenario would be to inspect the reverse of the tapestry to ascertain repairs over the years and analyse the fibres, but the case is sealed and cannot be opened without breaking it. However, enough information was obtained for further analysis to enable the experts to move our understanding forward about this outstanding piece of medieval art. There are a very small number of tickets still available for the conference and can be booked via Eventbrite at bit.ly/2QY3bs1

Mappa Coventry – what buildings do you feel were important in Coventry’s history?

August 22, 2019
Coventry has seen more changes to its built environment than most British towns over the past 1,000 years. Which of Coventry’s current and lost buildings do you feel should be highlighted on a map of historic Coventry? They could include the medieval castle, Pilgrim’s Rest, the workshop of John Thornton, Gosford Gate chapel, the Ram Bridge, the Bishop’s Palace, the Market Cross. Or what about modern structures such as the market clock tower, and factories such as Alvis, Standard, Singer and Courtaulds? Medieval Coventry is joining with the Historic Town Atlas charity to produce a high quality fold-out historic map of Coventry. Supported by Historic England, the project will be community-based and will consult with the public on the buildings that should be included. Please contact info@medievalcoventry.co.uk if you would like to get involved or if you have any suggestions. Please note this is will be a historic map of all periods of Coventry’s history – not just medieval.