Hidden Stratford-upon-Avon painting set to be uncovered

A historical chapel says it has raised enough funds to reveal part of a medieval wall painting which has been hidden for almost 500 years. The painting, in the Guild Chapel, in Stratford-upon-Avon, was covered with wood panels in the 15th Century.

The Stratford Town Trust began removing the panels in November 2016 after obtaining a £100,000 Heritage Lottery grant to preserve the painting beneath. So far it has removed five of the 27 panels and its latest fundraising bid, which has raised £5,000, will allow it to lift two more, subject to listed building consent.

The pictures hidden beneath show scenes including the Dance of Death and the Life of Adam:

William Shakespeare’s father, John, has been credited with saving the pictures, as he was town bailiff during the Reformation and received the order to remove them. Rather than destroying them as often happened, he painted over them with whitewash.

The charity which runs the chapel hopes to display the picture in January.

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