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National Friendly announces sponsorship of Woman’s Hour Craft Prize at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery

Celebrating its 150th anniversary, the Bristol based mutual insurer, National Friendly, has announced it is sponsoring the Woman’s Hour Craft Prize exhibition at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, which takes place from 7th July to 2nd September this year.

The exhibition is a partnership between BBC Radio 4, the Crafts Council and the Victoria and Albert Museum, to celebrate the 70th anniversary of BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour.

National Friendly has always been proactive in supporting women and children throughout its 150 year history. When the Society was founded in 1868, women and children were able to join as members and so take active steps to look after their own health and welfare, something which was unheard of at the time.

CEO at National Friendly, Jonathan Long, said, “As a fellow Bristol based company, we were delighted to be offered the opportunity to support such a prestigious exhibition at Bristol Museum & Art Gallery and we wish the organisers every success.”

National Friendly has strong links with the Bristol community and is a regular fundraiser for well known charities, raising nearly £12,000 for homeless charity St. Mungo’s last year. This year, the Society organised a sponsored 150 mile walk from Albury in Surrey to Bristol, to highlight its 150th anniversary and will be donating funds raised to the South Western branch of the Cystic Fibrosis charity.

In 1868 National Friendly was formed to help people prepare for life’s uncertainties. Today it follows the same principles offering innovative health insurance, life insurance and savings and investment plans. The Society is fully member-owned with no external shareholders.  

Details of National Friendly and its products are available on its website –

Laura Youngson Coll, Haeckel I (detail), 2014. Photo courtesy of Perrier-Jouet.

About Woman’s Hour Craft Prize

Woman’s Hour Craft Prize is a collaboration between the Crafts Council, the V&A and BBC Radio 4. The most comprehensive of its kind, the prize was established to find and celebrate the most innovative and exciting craft practitioner or designer-maker resident in the UK today. It rewards originality and excellence in concept, design and process, recognising makers who have demonstrably contributed to craft practice in the last five years. The finalists are Laura Ellen Bacon, Alison Britton, Neil Brownsword, Lin Cheung, Phoebe Cummings, Caren Hartley, Peter Marigold, Celia Pym, Romilly Saumarez Smith, Andrea Walsh, Emma Woffenden, and Laura Youngson Coll. Ceramicist Phoebe Cummings was named the winner on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour broadcast live from the V&A on 8 November 2017. She was awarded a prize of £10,000.


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