Send us news, start your message Cheshire News and your send photos and videos to 80360
Art gallery needs a new home
ARTISTS are in need of a patron to help them find a new home in Northwich town centre.
The Visual Arts Cheshire (VAC) gallery has become an unexpected community hub since it opened at the former Connexions office, in Witton Street, in February.
But VAC volunteers have been given notice to quit by May 8 because the vacant unit, near Northwich Library, is in demand.
Alan Carr, one of the four steering group members behind VAC, explained that landlords Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWAC) gave them the space rent-free for four months on the understanding that if a business wanted to pay full rent for the unit VAC would move out.
“That was always the deal but the initial response was so fantastic we hoped we might be able to make a case to stay here,” he said.
The gallery opened with a popular exhibition called The Lightfoot Letters, a fusion of poetry and textile art, and has now moved on to an open exhibiton for local artists.
It has also hosted a community exhibition of canvasses and a number of workshops to teach members of the public a variety of techniques, from watercolour to lino cutting.
Gill Snowball, fellow member of the VAC steering group, said: “What started out as four different artists coming from different genres and identifying that there’s no exhibition space in Northwich has just snowballed and it’s become much more than a gallery.
“It’s a community gallery – we’re reaching out to the community and bringing the community in.”
Artists have worked with Northwich’s schools, colleges and children’s centres and also with adults with learning difficulties and have welcomed visitors from as far a field as London and Belfast.
Gill said: “People have been inspired by it – even if they’re not artistic they really like the ambience.
“We just need someone to offer us premises.”
• VAC volunteers would ideally like town centre premises with good natural light and space for exhibitions and workshops. Anyone who can help should email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the gallery before May 8.