Bromsgrove Arts News

  • Tue 10 Apr 2012
    Jinney Ring potter Nancy Frost prepares for her charity pot throw in aid of the Dig Deep charity.A POTTER based at Hanbury’s Jinney Ring Craft Centre is aiming to raise £500 for charity by making 100 pots in a day.

    As part of a weekend of clay-related activities to mark St George’s Day on April 21, Nancy Frost is inviting Jinney Ring visitors to sponsor her pot throwing efforts in a bid to raise funds for Dig Deep, a charity which works to provide clean water and renewable energy in east Africa.

    The challenge is in support of Nancy’s daughter’s work with the charity and she hopes to raise at least £500 by finding 100 people who will each sponsor her 5p a pot.

    “This challenge is going to be tough as I’m not a production potter and the most pots I’ve ever thrown in a day before is 25,” she said. “However, I’m determined to do my best and I hope lots of people will drop in to watch my shelves fill as I endeavour to reach my goal of 100 pots in a day.”

    But it’s not just Nancy that will be getting to grips with clay on the weekend of April 21 – 22. To celebrate St George’s Day, Nancy and her fellow Jinney Ring potters will be running a free castle-themed ‘Play in the Clay Tray’ activity for children from 11.30am – 4pm on April 22.

    Children will also be able to attend a drop-in workshop on the same day where they can have a go at making crowns and other items relating to England’s patron saint. All items can be taken home on the day and the workshop costs £3 per child.

    For more information on the St George’s Day workshop call 01527 821272 or visit

    Anyone interested in sponsoring Nancy should call in to The Pottery at the Jinney Ring.

    Reprinted by kind permission of The Bromsgrove Advertiser

  • Tue 10 Apr 2012

    ART lovers are being invited to the next meeting of a town art society.

    On Tuesday, April 17, artist David Birtwistle will be giving a demonstration of a townscape in watercolour.

    David has his own gallery, Birties of Worcester, and exhibits widely in other galleries and with societies, including the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours and the Society of Architect-Artists, of which he is a fellow.

    David also has an international following after reproducing his watercolours as cards, calendars and prints.


    The meeting will be taking place at the St John Ambulance Centre, in Barnsley Hall Drive, Birmingham Road, from 7.30pm.

    There is an entry fee of £2, 50p for members, which includes coffee and biscuits.

  • Mon 9 Apr 2012

    THE local history group of the Bromsgrove Society is inviting residents to the final talk of its current winter series.

    On April 17, Dave Wood and James Swann will be speaking on the East Worcestershire Waterworks Company.

    The talk begins at 7.45pm, and will be held at Bromsgrove Methodist Centre, in Stratford Road.

    For more details see

  • Fri 6 Apr 2012
     Winners ceremony: Youngsters who took part in the Go Create! competition receive their winner’s prizes from county councillors Sheila Blagg, June Griffiths, Kit Taylor and Anthony Blagg. Ref:s
    CREATIVE youngsters from Bromsgrove have been rewarded after taking part in a major arts competition.

    Organised by Artrix Outreach, the 2011 Go Create! competition was open to youngsters aged between four and 25-years-old.

    The theme was Here I Am, and the young competitors were challenged to interpret this in their own creative ways in film, animation, photography, and the visual arts.

    Among the youngsters creations were a Lego animation, featuring a number of Bromsgrove landmarks, and photos of the local environment.

    A prizewinner’s ceremony was held at the Artrix, in School Drive, with the friends and families of the category winners invited along to celebrate.

    Prizes, including vouchers, art materials and digital cameras, were given to the winners by county councilors Sheila Blagg, June Griffiths, Kit Taylor and Anthony Blagg.

    A spokesman for Artrix Outreach said: “The judges were overwhelmed by the quality of the work submitted and delighted by the looks on the winners’ faces as they came to get their prizes.

    “All were very well deserved.”

    Organisers of Go Create! are now hoping to run the competition again this year, setting up new after-school workshops and courses for the participants.

  • Thu 5 Apr 2012

    BOSSES at Avoncroft are seeking a couple to literally spend ‘a night at the museum’ to help the venue kick-off its 50th anniversary celebrations.

    Two people will be able to reside in the 400-year-old Merchant’s House from Saturday (July 7) to Sunday (July 8), experiencing everyday life in Tudor times.

    The chosen couple will take part in all aspects of Tudor life - from dressing in the costume from the era, eating authentic Tudor food and undertaking household chores to trying Tudor recreational activities, such as archery and cloth dying.

    Avoncroft Museum director Simon Carter said the opportunity to turn back the clock hundreds of years was a chance of a lifetime.

    “The Merchant’s House is a stunning example of an early Tudor home.

    “We think the winners will really enjoy this one-off opportunity to make it their home for the weekend and it’s a fantastic way to kick start our 50th birthday celebrations,” he added.

    The building is particularly significant because it was the first one saved by the museum in 1962. After that, Avoncroft was established as a charitable organisation and, over the years, has acquired a variety of buildings, including a Victorian tin chapel, a 19th Century cell block, a post-war prefab and an Anderson bomb-shelter. It is also home to the National Telephone Kiosk Collection.

    Those wanting to put themselves forward to live in the Merchant’s House on July 7 and 8 need to submit a written application to the museum, outlining why they feel they would make worthy Tudors.

    A short-list will then be drawn up and, after an interview with two of the museum’s staff at the end of May, the lucky winners will be announced at the start of June.

    Training will be offered in advance and there will be an opportunity for the winning couple to meet their weekend guides - historians from the re-enactment group ‘Eye on the Past’.

    Applicants must be over 18 and be willing to share their experiences with visitors, as well as via social media networks, such as Facebook and Twitter, throughout the weekend.

    For more on the competition or to find out about other events taking place at Avoncroft Museum, call 01527 831363, visit or email business [at] avoncroft [dot] org [dot] uk.

    Reprinted by kind permission of The Bromsgrove Standard

  • Thu 5 Apr 2012

    Arts Council England on Monday 2 April published details of the final award amounts for its Renaissance major partner museums and the final transitional funding budget for museums exiting the old Renaissance programme.

    In the West Midlands Birmingham Museums Trust (Birmingham City Council and Thinktank) will receive £5,091,615,  and Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust will receive £2,434,227 over three years.  They are among 16 Major partner museums in England to receive awards.

    In January 2012, Arts Council England announced the 16 successful Major partner museums receiving funding through the reworked Renaissance programme between 2012-15. This was the first time major grants to regional museums had been awarded for a three year period (2012/13 - 2014/15) by Arts Council England via an open application process against published criteria.

    The 16 successful applicants requested £23.5 million a year against an annual budget of approximately £20 million. The exact amounts of each Major partner museum's award have been negotiated on an individual basis, and are published here.

    The awards to Major partner museums total £62.6 million over the next three financial years.

    For more information visit

  • Tue 3 Apr 2012

    SOME of the most talented young musicians in the country are set to head to the town for an event which forms a special part of Bromsgrove Festival.

    Described by organisers as Bromsgrove’s best kept secret, the Young Musicians Platform sees talented musicians from an international field, come to the town to compete.

    The difficultly of the competition was seen when in 1999, cellist Guy Johnston was runner up in the platform but a year later became the BBC’s Young Musician of the Year.

    The first round of the competition is taking place over two days, April 12-13, at the New Guesten Hall at Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings, where the entire event is taking place.

    The second round takes place on Saturday, April 14, while the semi finals will be held on Sunday morning, April 15.

    After the semi finals there will be just three competitors left, who will face each other at the final concert being held on the Sunday evening from 7pm.

    Entrance is free to the early rounds, up to the semi final, which takes place between 9.30am and 6pm.

    Tickets cost £15 for the final concert.

    The next event in the month-long festival is also being held at the New Guesten Hall on Wednesday, April 18, commencing at 7pm.

    Ken Russell’s acclaimed 1968 film Song of Summer is being shown, and this will then be followed by a concert.

    The recital is being given by the Sitkovetsky Duo of Alexander Sitkovetsky, on violin, and Wu Qian, on piano.

    Bromsgrove Festival chairman Mary White said: “How appropriate that Alexander returning to Bromsgrove for the third time, immediate follows the platform.

    “He was first prize winner of the platform in 2006.”

    For more information on the festival or to book tickets, call 01527 876504.

    Reprinted by kind permission of The Bromsgrove Advertiser

  • Fri 30 Mar 2012

    THERE were lots of laughs at The Palace Theatre, as All and Sundry performed Joseph Kesselring's classic Arsenic and Old Lace.

    The play centres around drama critic Mortimer Brewster who, in between reviewing plays and trying to decide whether or not to marry the love of his life Elaine Harper, has to also deal with his two aunties Martha and Abby who have acquired a penchant for putting old men out of their misery.

    The performance enabled the audience to take a break from the doom and gloom of the petrol crisis and see a performance which was fueled by plenty of energy, erraticness and enthusiasm.

    This great script was really brought to life by another talented cast that took the writer's intended dramatic tension and used it to the full to create a hilarious night of entertainment.

    Everyone played their part on the night but Barbara Treen and Mary Field excelled in their roles as twittering old dear aunties Martha and Abby. Their dead-pan approach showed perfectly the naivety and irony of their characters who, in their own little world, took a moral high ground on giving their victims a 'good Christian burial' in the cellar and the good jobs that the police did for them, despite them being murderers.

    That aspect, coupled with the brilliant Rory McGhie, who, as favourite nephew Mortimer, was frantically running around trying to cover up the old dears' antics made this production. His comedy timing, erratic actions and mannerisms were immense - especially against the backdrop of the aunties' incessant ramblings.

    Malcolm Berwick was suitably evil as prodigal baddie Jonathan and his side-kick, alcoholic surgeon Dr Einstein, was also well-played by Roger Goddard.

    And, if all that wasn't enough, Chris Hall was also fantastic as eccentric fantasist Teddy Brewster who believed he was American President Roosevelt. His brief appearances added even more comedy to the mix in what was a frantic comedy that you just could not take your eyes off for a minute as you wondered what would happen next.

    Reprinted by kind permission of The Bromsgrove Standard

  • Tue 27 Mar 2012

    DOZENS gathered in High Street around a statue of Bromsgrove’s most famous son, 153 years after his birth in the town.

    AE Housman, one of England’s best loved poets, died in 1936, aged 77, after spending much of his life with his family in Perry Hall.

    Among those who joined the celebrations on Monday, (March 26), around his commemorative statue were members of the town’s Housman Society, councilors, and guest for the day the Dean of Worcester Cathedral the Very Reverend Peter Atkinson.

    After society chairman Jim Page had given a short address he handed over to the dean, who gave a short readings of Housman’s poetry.

    During his talk Mr Atkinson joked that he wondered what Housman, an atheist, would have thought about being given the tribute by the dean all these years later.

    The guests then moved on to Housman Hall, formerly Perry Hall in Kidderminster Road, for a buffet lunch.

    Reprinted by kind permission of The Bromsgrove Advertiser

  • Sun 25 Mar 2012
    Tony Turpin has again helped organise the Bromsgrove Arts Society exhibition, which forms part of Bromsgrove Festival’s fringe. Tony Turpin has again helped organise the Bromsgrove Arts Society exhibition, which forms part of Bromsgrove Festival’s fringe.

    BUDDING artists are being given the chance to see their work go on display at a town exhibition.

    Bromsgrove Art Society’s Art Exhibition is being held at All Saints Church, in Birmingham Road, and will include a large number of paintings with different styles and subjects.

    The exhibition is again being organised by Tony Turpin, and forms part of Bromsgrove Festival fringe.

    Painters are allowed to submit a maximum of five pictures.

    On the back of each picture, artists are asked to stick a label with their name, address, the painting’s title, medium used, and price.

    All framed pictures should have a cord fixed firmly to the back, enabling pictures to be hung easily and securely.

    There is a hanging fee dependant on the size of the picture, while a maximum of five unframed pictures can be submitted at 50p each.

    The church receives 20 per cent of commission, which goes towards the church’s restoration fund and the organising of the exhibition.

    Artists are asked to bring along pictures to the church for hanging on Tuesday, April 17, between 10.30am-4pm.

    The exhibition is running between Saturday, April 21, and Saturday, May 5. It will be open between 10am-4pm weekdays, 11.30am-4pm on Sundays.

    Collection of pictures at the end of the exhibition is taking place on Saturday, May 5, from noon-4pm.

    Reprinted by kind permission of The Bromsgrove Advertiser