The Competition
Are you in years 7–10 (England & Wales), 8–11 (Northern Ireland) or S1–S4 in Scotland? Then the Walsall Leather Museum and the Leverhulme International Network Charlemagne: A European Icon invite you to participate in our design competition.

We want you to design a picture that children (ages 7–10) will be able to colour in. It must be based on the ‘Charlemagne Head’ from the Bayard’s Colts collection (left), currently held at Walsall Leather Museum.

All entries will be considered by a panel of art teachers and historians, and the designs of winners and runners-up will be posted on the Charlemagne: A European Icon website. Two winners will be picked and then presented with prizes at a public event taking place at Walsall Leather Museum on Saturday 1 September 2018.

All entries must be sent as an attachment in an email to by 31 July 2018 and the title Art Comp entered into the Subject Header.

In your email, please include a single paragraph explaining your design with details of research undertaken on the subject matter.


Background Information
Nobody is sure about the origins of the Bayard’s Colts – 17 clubs now held at Walsall Leather Museum. They are hundreds of years old, and at one time they were almost certainly carried in processions that marked important events in Walsall. With some of them measuring more than 2 metres long, they were clearly meant to make an impression on all who saw them.

At the top of each is a carved figure. Humans, animals, demons and weapons all feature. It is the ‘Charlemagne Head’ pictured here that you are being asked to concentrate on in your design. Charlemagne (Emperor Charles the Great) died in the year 814. During his life, he led a vast empire, but his legend was extremely popular in stories, poems and artwork throughout the Middle Ages and into the modern world. The ‘Charlemagne Head’ in the Bayard’s Colts collection is only one example of how the Charlemagne legend lived on.