That was 2019 at The Weaver’s House
What a busy year it has been for The Weaver’s House. This is the first year that we have had a special theme for every Open Day. Let’s take a whistle-stop tour…
It doesn’t seem a blink of an eye since we began the open season with Signs of Spring, on a sunny April day. A few weeks later, we had an extremely memorable day as reenactor group Coventry Militia brought expertise, costumes and weaponry for an authentic historical experience and some exciting medieval action! We are hoping they will join us for a future Open Day.
June and July delved into delicacies and dirt respectively, with Open Days on Tudor cooking and an archaeological dig. The Tudor recipes included Pease Pottage which visitors sampled on tiny trenchers (bread plates), and mostly declared that it was better than they expected! Coventry And District Archaeological Society (CADAS) ran the on-site dig for July, which unearthed finds including medieval pottery and later dated items such as glass, animal bones and pipe bowl/stem.
August brought a day of Summer Fun in the Garden. Young visitors enjoyed making woolly snails, weaving and “rub-a-bug” a brass rubbing style activity, featuring mini-beasts.
Before we knew it, it was September, and the annual festival of Heritage Open Days, this year celebrating its 25th anniversary. Back in the 90s it was just a single day. It runs across nearly two weeks now, and we opened for both weekends.
This year, the first Saturday coincided with the Spon Spun Arts and Heritage Trail, with the house hosting artwork by Karen Rose Textiles, marking the connection between weaving and the nearby river Sherbourne. This work is currently displayed at the Healing Arts Gallery at University Hospital Coventry & Warwickshire. During the second weekend, we celebrated the centenary of the birth of previous resident, Sid O’ Neil, with his descendants. Of course, we had cake!
Thanks to the skills of the Weavers’ Workshop, throughout September the window of The Weaver’s House was turned gold, along with most of Earlsdon, in tribute to Ben Crowther.
Although Open Day season ended in September, the house was open in October and November this year for Coventry Biennial. Three artworks were brought together to explore weaving as a historic and contemporary practice which is undertaken in almost every community across the globe. The exhibition closed in late November, ending our public openings for this year.
We also had some private groups in of course, including the Design Nation project and visitors with ancestors connected to the area.
What a busy year! We have next year’s dates in the diary and once we have finalised a few details, we’ll be listing them here very soon! We always welcome new volunteers, so if you have an interest in heritage, Coventry history, gardening or would just like to get involved, find out more here.