AIDS Memorial quilt displayed at Guildhall Art Gallery

A panel from the UK AIDS Memorial Quilt, commemorating the thousands of people who died from the AIDS epidemic in the UK, will be displayed at Guildhall Art Gallery next month to coincide with a series of events marking World AIDS Day.

The City of London Corporation’s official art gallery will show the quilt panel on the weekend of 3/4 December, as part of a Quilt Trail that includes St. Paul’s Cathedral, Positive East, Redbridge Central Library, and St. Anne’s Soho.

The events, which are organised and supported by charities including Terrence Higgins Trust, Positively UK, The Food Chain, and Elton John AIDS Foundation will mark the first time that the UK AIDS Memorial Quilt has been on public display in London in 20 years.

The exhibitions will aim to help remember lives lost, raise awareness of HIV to younger generations, and help find a permanent home for the UK quilt to ensure its preservation. The charities say the quilts should remind people that HIV no longer prevents those living with the virus from leading long and healthy lives, and that work continues to tackle stigma, stop transmission, and diagnose the one in six who don’t know that they have the virus.

Katty Pearce, City of London Corporation curator, says:

“My colleagues and I at Guildhall Art Gallery are proud to have been invited to display a panel from this iconic quilt, which forms a significant part of social history. The panels show the emotional and physical effects of AIDS at the beginning of the epidemic, as well as serving as a poignant and encouraging reminder of how far we have come in the last 30 years.”

David Farnsworth, Director of the City of London Corporation’s charitable funder, The City Bridge Trust, said:

“We are delighted to support charities such as Positively UK and The Food Chain, both of which are involved in the AIDS Memorial Quilt Project. As London’s biggest independent grant giver tackling disadvantage across the capital, The City Bridge Trust has given significant amounts of funding towards charities supporting people living with HIV, and we are proud to back this important work.”

Turner Prize-winning artist and broadcaster Grayson Perry said:

Collectively, the quilts are part of the largest piece of community art in the world, which shows just how important they are to our social history, and how special this event is. I am delighted to support these charities’ fantastic work in preserving this intensely moving piece of art.”

People can get involved on social media using the hashtag #AIDSQuiltUK


For further information, please contact:

Andrew Buckingham, Media Officer, City of London Corporation

Tel: 020 7332 1452 / 07795 333060 / Email

About the City of London Corporation:

The City of London Corporation is a uniquely diverse organisation. It supports and promotes the City as a world leader in international finance and business services and provides local services and policing for those working in, living in, and visiting the Square Mile. It also provides valued services to London and the nation. These include the Barbican Centre, Barbican Music Library, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, Guildhall Library, Guildhall Art Gallery and Roman Amphitheatre, London Metropolitan Archives, a range of education provision (including three City Academies); five Thames bridges (including Tower Bridge and Millennium Bridge), Central Criminal Court at Old Bailey, over 10,000 acres of open spaces (including Hampstead Heath and Epping Forest), and three wholesale food markets. The City of London Corporation is London’s Port Health Authority and also runs the Animal Reception Centre at Heathrow. For more details, visit

About Guildhall Art Gallery:

Guildhall Art Gallery was established in 1886 as 'a Collection of Art Treasures worthy of the capital city'. See works dating from 1670 to the present, including seventeenth century portraits, Pre-Raphaelite masterpieces and a fascinating range of paintings documenting London's dramatic history. General admission to Guildhall Art Gallery is FREE; however, an entrance fee may be charged for some exhibitions, with concessionary rates for senior citizens, registered unemployed and registered disabled.

Monday - Saturday, 10am - 5pmSunday, 12pm - 4pm

Call 020 7332 3700 / textphone 020 7332 3803 for a daily recorded message or for more information. Email and follow @GuildhallArt

AIDS Memorial quilt trail venues include:

  • St Pauls Cathedral, Sat and Sun
  • All Hallows by the Tower, Byward Street, 10am - 5pm Sat and Sun
  • Positive East, 159 Mile End Rd
  • St John's Bethnal Green
  • Redbridge Central Library
  • St Anne's Soho, 55 Dean Street, 1.30 - 6pm Sunday Only
  • Brand Museum, 111-117 Lancaster Road, Notting Hill, 10 – 6pm Sat, 11 – 5pm Sunday
  • Lumen Church, 88 Tavistock Place, Friday and Saturday
  • Church of the Immaculate Conception, Farm Street, 26 Russell Square, 1 Dec onwards
  • St Giles', Cripplegate, 11am - 4pm Sat & 11am - 1pm Sun

Useful facts about HIV

  • HIV is a virus which attacks the immune system and weakens the body’s ability to fight diseases
  • An estimated 103,700 people are living with HIV in the UK and 6,000-7,000 people are diagnosed every year.
  • Of these, 17% are undiagnosed and do not know about their HIV infection.
  • HIV treatment lowers the amount of virus in the blood to undetectable levels which stops it from damaging the immune system, and means that the virus cannot be passed on to other people.
  • There is still a great deal of stigma about HIV. Stigma is damaging as it prevents people from getting tested, from accessing treatment and from living a happy and healthy life.
  • The most common way HIV is transmitted is through sex without a condom.
  • You cannot get HIV through casual or day-to-day contact, or kissing, spitting or sharing a cup, plate or toilet seat.