Will Quince puts forward Colchester to host Bayeux Tapestry

This image provided by the Mairie de Bayeux, Normandy, France, shows a section from the Bayeux tapes

This image provided by the Mairie de Bayeux, Normandy, France, shows a section from the Bayeux tapestry. French officials are considering loaning the historic 70-meter-long Bayeux Tapestry to Britain for the first time. Picture: STEPHANE MAURICE/MAIRIE DE BAYEUX - Credit: AP

An Essex MP has put forward his constituency to be the home of the Bayeux Tapestry when it comes to the UK.

Will Quince says Colchester's hertiage would make it a great candidate to host the Bayeux Tapestry.

Will Quince says Colchester's hertiage would make it a great candidate to host the Bayeux Tapestry. Picture: CONTRIBUTED - Credit: Archant

Will Quince, MP for Colchester, has written to Theresa May expressing his support for the town to host the nearly 1000 year old piece when it visits Britain.

“We have got the largest Norman keep in Europe,” said Mr Quince, “and a huge amount of Norman heritage.”

“It would be a huge boost to Colchester and the eastern region.”

Mr Quince believes that the Firstsite gallery, which is located next to Colchester Castle would be the perfect venue to host such a prestigious exhibition and the large amount of visitors that would come with it.


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Mr Quince has also written to the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, West Suffolk MP Matt Hancock to further press why he believes Colchester should be given the honour.

Despite his passion for Colchester being home to the tapestry Mr Quince remains realistic about the town’s chances.

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“There will be lots of places that will want it but as long as we are in the running it’s important that we stake a claim,” he said.

Prime Minister Theresa May described the plans for the artefact’s visit as “very significant” and highlighted the importance of it being visible to “the maximum number of people.”

Amongst Colchester’s potential rivals is the British Museum in London. The museum’s director, Hartwig Fischer, said yesterday that the museum would be “honoured and delighted” to display the Bayeux Tapestry.

“This would be a major loan, probably the most significant ever from France to the UK.

“It is a gesture of extraordinary generosity and proof of the deep ties that link our countries.”

Mr Quince is not the only MP to have put his constituency in the running. Bexhill and Battle MP Huw Merriman also put forward Battle Abbey, the site of the 1066 battle, as a possible site.

No date has yet to be set for the tapestry’s visit with the Prime Minister expected to discuss the potential loan when she meets with French President Emmanuel Macron today.

It could take five years for the piece to reach the UK with a spokesperson for Mr Macron saying that the visit wouldn’t be before 2020.

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