Organised by the Sussex Volunteer Fundraising Committee

The Battle of Hastings as the Bayeux Tapestry tells it ‘Whoever rules, life is hard for the underclasses’ and will get much harder under the Normans!

  • St Mary in the Castle |
  • Lecture |
  • Thursday, 29 September 2016 - 13:30 until 15:30

Celebrate the 950th anniversary of the event that transformed England’s culture and heritage, as told by those that were there at the time. Everyone thinks they know the story of how our Harold (the Good Guy!) was so unfairly felled by an arrow in the eye by the Wicked William! But is that really what happened? And did the battle really take place at Battle?

The Bayeux Tapestry is an extraordinary example of Anglo-Norman embroidery art. In addition it is chronicle, political propaganda and visual evidence of 11th century mundane objects all on a monumental scale. the Sussex Committee have arranged an exciting combination of events to mark this once-in-a-lifetime anniversary.

First, Professor Gale Owen-Crocker, Professor Emerita of The University of Manchester, (“In the field of Anglo-Saxon studies she stands as one of the greats.”) will provide an illustrated guide to this most extraordinary record of the founding of our nation. She will show evidence of what life was like in the 11th century and go on to highlight the ambiguities left by the designer in order to please both their new Norman rulers whilst, at the same time, managing to show a residual loyalty to their former Anglo-Saxon ones; and she will describe how they managed to make such a magnificent embroidery.

The venue of St Mary in the Castle (an amphitheatre set into the cliff face) is worth the visit in its own right. But you will be amazed to view a full size replica of the Bayeux Tapestry (more than 70 yards!) on display in the crypt of the old church. This has been crafted in steel mosaics by New Zealander, Michael Linton, and shipped over from NZ to be displayed here during this 950th anniversary year.

And lastly, you will have the opportunity to walk over to the Jerwood Gallery to view their special major exhibition presenting work by the celebrated English artist and painter, Marcus Harvey, as part of the Root 1066 International Festival. The festival offers spectacular outdoor events, fantastic performances and exhibitions and exciting participatory projects across 1066 Country focused in Hastings, Bexhill and Battle and the organisers are kindly supporting the Art Fund by sponsoring this event.

This event has been organised by the Sussex Volunteer Fundraising Committee to help raise money for the Art Fund.

Venue details

St Mary in the Castle
7 Pelham Place, Hastings East Sussex TN34 3AF