Fishing for friends of art

Friends of Rye Art Gallery meeting for lunch last year may be asked to become subscribers

Friends of the Rye Art Gallery had their annual lunch, as in previous years, at Webbe’s, the fish restaurant in Tower Street. It was my first time as I usually avoid group celebrations and this time there were more than 40 keen members. But I did not need to worry. Gill and Paddy Harvey, who have steered the Friends Committee over recent years with great success, are wonderful organisers.


Several tables were beautifully laid out, we were given a card with our food orders to make it easier for the staff and a welcome drink while we mingled, before choosing a seat with friends or new faces. Though I chose the wrong meal, fish medley (I don’t eat shellfish), I did not go hungry as diners around me, with great amusement, were happy to swap their salmon for my sea mussels. Listening to the lively chatter it was clear that it was an enjoyable occasion.

A big thank you to Gill and Paddy. Sadly they are stepping down as chair and secretary from the Friends Committee. Over the years they have worked very hard to produce a lively programme in Rye, arranging talks by different artists (Richard Adams, Andy Wood, Andrew Ashton and more) as well as visits to other galleries outside Rye and a fun Christmas Party, apart from being responsible for the membership and keeping us  informed with a Newsletter.

To step into their shoes will not be an easy task. However, if anyone reading this or who knows someone who might want a challenge, please contact me at


Photo: Heidi Foster