A HISTORICAL artefact giving a glimpse into the past of life in Haverfordwest has been discovered and donated to the town museum.

The embroidered tablecloth believed to have been made by the congregation of Bethesda Baptist Church, Haverfordwest for a celebration following the 1937 coronation of George VI.

The cloth is embroidered with the names of local dignitaries including the mayor and sheriff, the chief constable of Pembrokeshire constabulary, and business leaders from the town.

Simon Hancock, curator of Haverfordwest Town Museum, said the artefact was unusual because it was unfinished: not all of the names written onto the cloth had been embroidered in red thread.

“It is a snapshot of Haverfordwest society as it was 82 years ago,” he said.

“What is intriguing isn’t just its size, but the fact that it is not finished.”

The cloth dates from the coronation bazaar held at Bethesda Baptist Church in May 1937, celebrating the start of George VI’s rule, the father of Queen Elizabeth II.

It was donated by a man from Diss in Norfolk, whose uncle had kept it in a trunk in the Rhondda for many years before he died.

The donor's grandfather was the pastor at Bethesda Church from 1923-49.

Mr Hancock is now hoping to apply for funding which will allow the museum to conserve the tablecloth and display it at the museum in the future.

He hopes it might become a focal point for visitors, as many people still have a connection with the families of those who signed the cloth.

“There is a name on the cloth – Tom Jones – he’s not the singer, he was quite a well-known tobacconist in the town. Lots of older people in Haverfordwest can still remember him.”

Mr Hancock believes the cloth was signed following the coronation bazaar and then embroidery work was later begun, probably by a sewing society with close links to the church.

“There were various guilds and societies association with the chapels when they were strong,” he said.