Artists join centenary celebration

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Nicholas Dent, Councillor Sinden and art tutor Judith Sillem enjoy the party

Amateur art students from Rye, who have been studying with the Workers Educational Association (WEA) at St Mary’s centre, attended a reception at the White Rock Hotel in Hastings to mark 100 years since a ground-breaking government report on adult education. Also there to join the celebrations were Councillor Nigel Sinden, the mayor of Hastings, and Nicholas Dent, the chair of the award-winning Hastings, St Leonard’s and Bexhill branch of WEA, as well as tutors and other guests.

Guests enjoy the students’ exhibits

The party was held on Thursday July 11 as part of a series of events to recognise the 100th anniversary of the Ministry of Reconstruction’s Adult Education Committee’s Final Report on adult education. The ministry was established by the Prime Minister at the time, the Right Honourable David Lloyd George, to oversee rebuilding the nation after the end of the First World War. The adult education committee focused on education other than vocational or technical subjects and one of the committee members was Albert Mansbridge, who founded the WEA in 1903.

Nicholas Dent welcomed guests and gave a brief summary of the work that the WEA does, and Councillor Sinden praised the efforts of tutors and students. On display at Thursday’s gathering were an impressive selection of paintings, photographs, essays, willow baskets, and macramé works produced by WEA students.

Local WEA courses being held next term include:
• Exploring DSLR Photography (Tutor Michael Meekin);
• Creative Writing – Start To Write (Rosalind Balp);
• Literature: Exiles (Elizabeth Allen);
• Practical Macramé (Beverley Sell);
• Art and Design: Drawing and Mixed Media (Beverley Sell);
• Willow Basketry (Julie Gurr);
• Coiled Basketry (Julie Gurr);
• Sketching and Painting Outdoors (Judith Sillem); and
• Watercolour Painting for All (Judith Sillem).

Details of these courses and more information about the WEA and the centenary celebrations can be found on the WEA website.

Image Credits: Tony McLaughlin .

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