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Alison Keld, a Hull Maritime volunteer visits The Guildhall and the Hull Tapestry that took volunteers 15 years to complete the 19 panels. Here's her account of the visit.

On a recent day out with a friend I asked if she had ever seen the Hull Tapestry. No, never heard of it, she said, what is it? I explained the tapestry can be viewed for free at the Guildhall in the room opposite the reception desk. (main entrance on Lowgate) So off we went to have a look.

You can’t help but be amazed at the skill of the Hull Tapestry Group volunteers, who took 15 years to complete the 19 panels that depict so vividly the historic achievements and pioneering spirit of Hull life over the past 800 years.

Each panel is a visual piece of history starting with The Monks of Meaux, followed by Charles 1st at the Beverley Gate, Hull Fair and Markets, Education, Art Music and Literature, Fishing Fleet, Shipping, Trinity House, Dock Development, Whaling, William Wilberforce, Amy Johnson, Andrew Marvell, Industry, Public Health, The Blitz, Transport, New Buildings, King Billy and Insignia.

Two information boards describe how the tapestry was designed and created.

I photographed five panels with a Maritime theme.

Trinity House

Centre left shows Thomas Ferres, Master Mariner, Warden of Hull Trinity House, Mayor, and Sheriff. Ferres bequeathed the Whitefriargate estate to Hull Trinity House, with the rents to be used for the benefit of needy seafarers and their families. The control of shipping and navigation on the Humber is also depicted, as is the distinctive uniform of Trinity House navigation school founded in 1787, with their crest, an upside down anchor and three stars, with Latin motto Spes Super Sydera, meaning Hope Beyond The Stars.


In this panel we see the harsh conditions associated with whaling. Master Mariner Samuel Standidge top right, revived the declining industry with a successful fleet of Hull whalers. Standidge was also Mayor of Hull and five times Warden of Hull Trinity House.

Dock development

Skilfully depicted in the Dock Development panel are the seven miles of docks that fronted the Humber or the River Hull, where a vast and skilful workforce dealt with international trade. In addition to the docks and railway companies we see the former Dock Office close to the lock gates at the entrance to Queen’s Dock, the first dock to be built in Hull.

Fishing fleet

The striking colours of the Funnels and flags of the Hull Fishing Fleets lead the eye to the emblem of the Royal National Mission to Deep Sea Fishermen (Fishermen’s Mission) who support fishermen and their families in their hour of need. The statue beneath is the Fishermen’s Memorial, erected by public subscription in memory of 3 trawlermen killed in 1904 when the Russian Baltic Fleet fired on a group of Hull fishing vessels, known as the Dogger Bank Incident. The statue of skipper Smith of the trawler 'Crane’ is situated at the heart of Hessle Road, for generations the home of the fishing community. It remains as a tribute to the bravery of the city's trawlermen past and present.


I really like this panel, it has so much detail in the house flags and funnels and different types of vessels. Pleasing to see the Spurn Lightship depicted, she guided vessels safely through the treacherous River Humber for almost 50 years.

My friend and I both agreed this amazing City treasure is worthy of much more recognition.