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Kneelers for our Chapel

Fulham Palace is very lucky to be rich in resources, from beautiful architecture and rich history to talented and dedicated volunteers. And one particular project currently taking place is making the most of all of these.

Two years ago it was noted that couples attending marriage blessings in the Palace’s Victorian chapel had to kneel on the floor and what the chapel really needed was some kneelers. All Saints Church kindly lent a couple but we realised that wasn’t a long term solution.

Thankfully we have a sewing bee: a team of experienced and dedicated sewers and embroiderers who were willing to take on the challenge, led by volunteer Esther Dean, a retired costume designer with two BAFTAs to her name.
Our next step was to contact the Royal School of Needlework to see if they could support us with the project. Thankfully they were very keen and enlisted the help of professional embroiderer and tutor Helen Richman to work up the designs for the kneelers and to lead some workshops to support the sewing bee volunteers.

The sewing bee suggested we commission 14 kneelers with design motifs using the coats of arms of the Bishops of London. It was agreed we would have the following coats of arms:

Bishop of London x 7
Bishop Wand
Bishop Tait
Bishop Creighton
Bishop Winnington-Ingram
Bishop Chartres
Bishop Wingham x 2

The particular bishops were selected for their links to the chapel’s history, except for Bishop Chartres who was selected as he is the current Bishop of London. Bishop Wingham’s coat of arms was chosen for the bride and groom’s kneelers as it features a winged heart.

Our wonderful sewing bee volunteers are now busy working on the embroidery and hope to have them completed by the summer when they will have to be made up with a base and foam inserts before we can start to use them for ceremonies.

We are very grateful for all the time and effort they have put in to making this project happen and can’t wait to see them finished and being used in the chapel on couples’ special days.

Kneelers for our Chapel
Kneelers for our Chapel
Kneelers for our Chapel
Designed at Richard P Chapman Design Associates

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