Touching tapestry brings the horrors of Great War to life

The Falklands ceremony in Gosport

Falklands veterans march through Gosport on 35 anniversary of conflict

  • Stunning textile book of remembrance commissioned to mark 100 years since the start of the First World War
  • Members of the public contributed memories and recollections
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THE horrific reality of the trenches and the devastation of war has been brought to life in an intricate tapestry.

Textile artist Margaret Marks spent months working with the people of Havant to put together the Textile Book of Remembrance to mark the start of the First World War in 2014.

The textile book of remembrance for WW1 made by Margaret Marks on display at The Spring in Havant, with Kate Saunders of the The Spring looking at the artwork ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (151005-17)

The textile book of remembrance for WW1 made by Margaret Marks on display at The Spring in Havant, with Kate Saunders of the The Spring looking at the artwork ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (151005-17)

It incorporates all the names on Havant War Memorial at the crossroads outside St Faith’s Church as well as photos and postcards.

The Spring Arts and Heritage Centre commissioned the stunning 18-page book which has been laid out flat, and framed, so that people can see each page clearly.

Artist Margaret, from Lee-on-the-Solent, said: ‘The main theme of the embroidered book is taken from a poem that was handed to me by a local Havant resident. They found it in their family’s papers.

‘It tells of one man’s experience, from recruitment to that final sacrifice.

The main theme of the embroidered book is taken from a poem that was handed to me by a local Havant resident, who found it in her family’s papers

Margaret Marks

‘I have taken excerpts from it and then sewn it in the gentleman’s handwriting.

‘Each page is 10in wide and 13.5in high, with a facing page stitched with the names on the memorial.

‘The last two pages have been added to by the community.’

The public shared their stories and recollections of family and friends who took part in The Great War.

One hundred people created fabric poppies.

Kate Saunders is the participation and heritage manager at The Spring,

She said: ‘The finished book is both a touching reminder of the sacrifice made by Havant residents and a powerful artistic statement.

‘It embodies the importance of commemorating and celebrating our local heritage.

‘What’s really important is the names. There are no ranks because they all died equal.

‘They all died for their country, they all died for their families.’

Mayor of Havant, Councillor Leah Turner, unveiled the 15ft artwork at The Spring in East Street.

It will remain on display in the Sadler Gallery until October 29 and is free to view.

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