The group was started in 2011 by Ruth Sewell and was originally called St John’s Quilters. It was formed as a fundraising group to make a quilt to raffle for the church funds. We started with about six people including Ruth Sewell, Jenny Dunford, Stephen and Pippa West, Mary Sanders and others. The quilt was a great success and raised over £1,000 for the church. Most of the group, apart from Ruth and Jenny, were beginners and we continued to meet after the project was completed. Ruth continued to run the group after the project was finished, we attracted new members and the name was eventually changed to Riverside Quilters. Due to pressure of work and her Lay Preaching duties Ruth was unable to continue with the group and Jenny took over from her.
The quilters are a small informal group and meet once a week on Mondays on alternate afternoons and evenings in each others homes and now have about 15 members. The members work on their own projects but also continue to do joint projects for charities. They have made quilts for Hospice Care in Exeter and lap quilts for the Hospice in Yeovil, amongst others, and their latest project was a quilt for the Grenfell Tower appeal.
If you have any information on other village needlework groups that may have existed before the Riverside Quilters, or were part of such a group,we would love to hear from you.
References and credits
Thank you to Jenny Dunford for the information in this article.