Sunday 21 October 2018

Theresa May 'honoured' that France will loan Britain Bayeux Tapestry

The work has not left France in its nearly 950-year known history

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May and France's President Emmanuel Macron walk to pose for a family photo at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, during UK-France summit talks in Sandhurst, Britain, January 18, 2018. REUTERS/Stefan Rousseau/Pool
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May and France's President Emmanuel Macron walk to pose for a family photo at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, during UK-France summit talks in Sandhurst, Britain, January 18, 2018. REUTERS/Stefan Rousseau/Pool
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Thursday she was honoured that France will lend Britain the Bayeux Tapestry, an 11th century treasure that tells the story of William the Conqueror's invasion of England in 1066.

"Our shared history is reflected in the loan of the Bayeux Tapestry to the UK in 2022, the first time it will be on British soil in more than 900 years," May said in a statement as she welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron on a visit to Britain.

"I am honoured at the loan of such a precious piece of our shared history which yet again underscores the closeness of the UK-France relationship," May said.

The loan would be part of a wider cultural exchange between Britain and France over the next four years, she said.

The 70-metre long work, the precise origins of which are obscure and which has not left France in its nearly 950-year known history, is currently on display in the town of Bayeux, in the northwestern French region of Normandy.

Macron told reporters that the France and Britain were now fighting wars together, a reference to cooperation between the two former European adversaries against armed Islamist movements including in countries Mali.

"We are in a way making a new tapestry together," he said.

A French official said on Wednesday the loan would not take place immediately because work needed to be done on the tapestry to ensure it was safe to move it.

Reuters

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