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National Needlework Archive

For day to day, special, and up to date information, such as closures due to bad weather etc., please click here to go onto our Facebook page.

The Old Chapel Textile Centre in Newbury, home of the National Needlework Archive, offer courses, workshops and exhibitions in sewing, haberdashery,  needlecraft, textiles, embroidery, cross stitch, quilting and textile art. Our shop carries an extensive range of all needlework and sewing products including fabric, threads, wool, zips and patterns. We have an archive of historic textiles and patterns and are home to The Country Wife mural.

National Needlework Archive

Country Wife Mural

National Needlework Archive in Newbury. The national record of textiles in the UK. Home of the Country Wife Mural - Contance Howard's mural made for the 1951 Festival of Britain

Archives and Study Collection


The NNA specialises in community textiles. We keep records of textiles, an extensive reference library and a textile collection


Conservation of the  Country Wife  Mural  - made for the  Festival of Britain  1951

Designed by Constance Howard, and made by her and some of her students at Goldsmiths College, the mural now resides at the National Needlework Archive


The Conservation Room is now open.  Talks about The Country Wife take place at  

11am and 2.30pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays,  and at 11am only on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

The Old Chapel Textile Centre is a voluntary community project providing space for needlework and textile courses, workshops, exhibitions, conferences and events and is the home of the National Needlework Archive and the 'Country Wife' mural circa 1951.


The  National Needlework Archive (NNA) was founded in 1998 as a charity and moved to The Old Chapel, Greenham Business Park, Newbury, in 2010. The chapel offers a great work space,educational space, as well as housing a growing collection of historical needlecraft items and database.

We aim to include all areas of the community in education and promotion of all aspects of needlecraft and textile art.

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Old Chapel Textile Centre

National Needlework Archive in Newbury. The national record of textiles in the UK.

The Old Chapel Textile Centre is now closed for the winter. We look forward to welcoming visitors back on Tuesday 1st  March 2022. In the meantime we have a great range of sewing/knitting & craft items that customers can buy at our 'pop-up' shop, The Green Sewing Shop. We are also accepting donations to the National Needlework Archive at the shop as well.

Poetry in Stitches 2021
‘LOCKDOWN’
Click here to see the Gallery

The NNA is opening a ‘pop up’ shop in Northbrook Street, Newbury to sell recycled needlecraft items and books.  The shop will be open five days a week being Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10am to 4pm each day.


WE NEED VOLUNTEERS to help us in this venture and if you are interested in giving us a few hours a week to work in a cheerful, creative environment, we would love to hear from you. Call 01635 38740 or email us on   octc@live.com

Volunteers may assist with - customer service, stock display and control, preparation of needle/craft items for sale, helping in the bookshop (first floor), or any of the other tasks involved with running a specialist shop; including the repair and cleaning of vintage sewing machines for re-sale (first floor). In the first instance the bookshop will be selling books of a general nature as well as textile books. There is a disabled staff toilet and ramp on the ground floor; stair access to the first floor of the premises.

Saturday 2nd October: We are returning to our First Saturday of the Month opening times  therefore The Old Chapel Textile Centre will be open from 10am to 4pm.

Saturday 9th October: OCTC will be open from 10am to 1pm.

After that date The Old Chapel Textile Centre will be open on the first Saturday of each month when there will be a full programme of events including free demonstrations in the mornings at 10:30am.


Tuesdays and Thursdays remain as is: Open 10.00am to 4.00pm and Wednesdays from 10.00am to 1.00pm


From Saturday 16th October shoppers will find a great range of our donated needlecraft items for sale at The Green Sewing Shop located at 21 Northbrook Street, Newbury RG 14 1DJ.

The Rag Rug Christmas Wreath Workshop on Saturday 20th November will now take place at The Green Sewing Shop.