Kneelers: Traditions and Techniques

Sorry, you missed this one!
Embroidered kneeler with mushroom design

10am - 4pm : The Atrium

Exhibit Free Activity Textiles Drop-in Free
  • Parking
  • Disabled parking
  • Wheelchair access
  • Toilets
  • Disabled toilets
  • Changing places

The Forum, Millennium Plain, Norwich, NR2 1TF

01603 727 950

Explore the stories and people behind this often overlooked folk art.

Gobelin, rice, long arm cross and tent.

These are styles of stitches used when embroidering kneelers, the boxy cushions provided in churches to protect worshipers' knees from cold stone floors.

Kneeler making was popular in the first half of the 20th century and became a widespread form of folk-art involving local communities.

Embroidered kneeler with fireplace and chair design
Detail from kneeler at Congham church

Each kneeler, where ever you find one, is a unique, hand crafted, creation depicting stories, histories, beliefs and customs.

Meet the custodians of the kneelers at St Andrew's, Eaton, and Congham: St Andrew, near Kings Lynn.

There'll be a selection of kneelers on display and plenty for embroidery and textile enthusiasts to talk about.

Embroidered kneeler with donkey design
Detail from a kneeler at St Andrews, Eaton.

If this event sparks your interest, there's a book by Elizabeth Bingham, a leading authority on Anglican church kneelers, called Kneelers: The Unsung Folk Art of England and Wales.

Elizabeth Bingham has also put together a website, Parish Kneelers, to act as a national archive and to encourage new creations. Link below.

While all safety measures will be taken and advice given, you participate in free activities and workshops at your own risk.