Stroud care home unveils ‘Stroudwater Scarlet’ wall hanging

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Ian Mackintosh, founder member of the Stroudwater Textile Trust, historian and lecturer, was given the honour of unveiling a wall hanging created by residents at Care UK's Scarlet House with help from community artist Anna Thornhill.  

The wall hanging is based on the history of the ‘Stroudwater Scarlet’ cloth that was woven at Ebley Mill and used for the Regiment of Guards uniforms. It depicts a mill, cloth drying on the hillside, and soldiers in uniform. 

Examples of the Stroud Scarlet cloth, which was a valuable commodity and traded all over the world, have been found in Native America clothing and in Japan. 

The border of the wall hanging is made up of motifs which relate to the wool industry. These include teazels – which were used to raise the knap of the wool – the diamond-shaped shuttle which held the thread on a loom, the shears used to shear sheep, and the water wheel – which was an essential mechanism for driving the machinery of the mills.

Pupils from St. Mathew’s Church of England Primary School joined residents for a talk from Ian, who discussed the history which inspired the wall hanging. The pupils also showed examples of collages they had made at Scarlet House based on the wall hanging. 

The official unveiling of the wall hanging coincided with Care Home Open Day and visitors were treated to a host of activities in honour of the Queen’s 90th birthday. The royal celebration included a poetry recital, live entertainment and a special visit from the Pearly King and Queen.  

Pyela Mwale, home manager at Scarlet House, said: “It was wonderful to officially unveil the wall hanging which the residents have worked really hard to complete and everyone enjoyed getting involved in the activities and building on our links with the local community. The day was a real success, we were thrilled to have so many people through the door to join our celebrations.”

Anna Thornhill is a community artist who has recently moved to Stroud. She has many years of experience as a workshop leader, arts project manager and film maker. She is currently developing textile collage projects with local residential homes. 

Open to new residents

123 Westward Road, Ebley, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL5 4SP

Scarlet House

Scarlet House

CQC Rating: Good
  • Residential care
  • Dementia care
  • Nursing care
  • Nursing dementia care
  • Respite care
  • End of life care
  • Day club

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