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Bayeux tapestry to go to England

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Bayeux tapestry to go to England

Bayeux tapestry to go to England
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The Brits have asked twice before but French President Emmanuel Macron has now said "yes" to the Bayeux Tapestry crossing the Channel to be exhibited in England.

The announcement comes a day before Macron is due to visit Britain for talks with Prime Minister Theresa May.

The 11th century tapestry has not left France in its 950-year history. But the Bayeux museum has been steadily losing British visitors over the last ten years. For the town’s mayor, Patrick Gomont, this is a chance to ‘invade’ England a second time.

"The idea is to reconquer this British audience, a bit like William (the Conqueror) did, to go and find them and so there's clearly nothing better than putting it on display for a few months or weeks in London, at the British Museum, for example," said Gomont.

The tapestry depicts the Norman conquest of England by William the Conqueror culminating in the Battle of Hasting. And medieval historian Julia Barrows, at the University of Leeds, says there’s more to the tapestry than meets the eye. "The tapestry has words as well as pictures," she explains. "The wording is often bland or it points at gaps in what it's saying which is not exactly what the pictures underneath are saying."

France says the loan is agreed in principle but is still several years away because work needs to be done to ensure the tapestry is safe to move.