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Ely Catherdral


Matador Jacket

Throughout February a selection of exhibits from some of the world's leading examples of embroidery will be on display in the Lady Chapel at Ely Cathedral. The Beautiful Stitch is made up of over 50 exhibits which have been handpicked from the Embroiderers' Guild collection to show embroidery at its very best and, in some cases, its most peculiar, art form.

All of the exhibits have either been donated to, or purchased by, the Embroiderers' Guild for preservation and archive purposes. Some of the most visually striking include a 200 year old Matador's Jacket in purple velvet decorated in silver thread and made in Spain. Other interesting works includes a late 19thcentury Dragon Robe from China which would have been worn by a high-ranking mandarin. The blue silk fabric is hand embroidered with nine dragons, red bats and crane medallions.

15th century Mediaeval Cope

Over 150 people attended the preview with representatives from the Embroiderers' Guild including their Executive Chair, Muriel Campbell, who was felt the chosen venue could not have been more appropriate. "The Guild is delighted to be able to bring valued items from its collection of embroideries and textile art to be seen by the public and have them exhibited inthe magnificent surroundings of Ely Cathedral".

In addition to the main collection the exhibition also includes interesting examples of embroidery from the Cathedral's own collection. Amongst them a 15th century Mediaeval Cope which is one of the best examples of its time and rarely on public display.

King's Ely, which has an excellent reputation for Art and Textiles, are also participating in the exhibition with a striking display of samples of coursework produced by GCSE and A Level students.

The Beautiful Stitch runs from 6 -28 February. Access to the Exhibition is included in the standard entry fee to the Cathedral. For further information click here.

Further information about the Embroiderers' Guild can be found at


Dragon Robe Embroidery

For further information please contact Lesley Ann Thompson - 01353 660350/07930 918885

About Ely Cathedral

Highly regarded by historians and architects from all over the world for its beauty and size, Ely Cathedral is widely acknowledged as 'one of the wonders of the Medieval world'. Visible for miles around, the Cathedral is often referred to as 'The Ship of the Fens'.

The present building dates from 1081 and is a remarkable example of both Romanesque and Norman architecture. In addition to its unique Octagon Tower and magnificent Lady Chapel, Ely has the third longest nave of any UK Cathedral. The Cathedral's role today is not so far removed from its days as a Benedictine monastery and offers regular daily worship with a special emphasis on choral music. It still maintains a resident choir of 22 choristers and 6 lay clerks and so continues the tradition of choral evensong every day of the week during term time.

As well as being a major visitor attraction, the Cathedral serves as a cultural focal point for East Anglia by providing a unique venue for the arts & music, for exhibitions, concerts and theatre. Most recently Ely has gained global recognition a prominent film location including Elizabeth: The Golden Age, The Other Boleyn Girl, Macbeth, The King's Speech and The Crown.