Charity funds from art hit by recession

Organisers say the Branscombe bi-annual art exhibition was hit by the recession as despite high visitor numbers its sales were down.

The event over the Easter weekend at the Village Hall showcased a wealth of local artistic talent, including Ray Young from Budleigh Salterton.

But the Branscombe Art Exhibition Committee think they will not be able to give as much to charity as they have previously after fewer items were sold.

More than 100 people attended the preview event on Thursday, April 21, where Bill and Evelyn Lankester from Sidmouth charity ‘Living with Cancer’ were introduced.

Most of the proceeds from the exhibition go towards the support group for the disease, and in return a team of its volunteers helped steward the event which was open to the public Friday through until Monday.

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And although visitor number were strong, they expect the percentage of items sold to be well below the 25 per cent sold in 2009 when they come to total it up next week.

Graham Walford-Howell, part of the organising team, said: “Unfortunately the amount we will be able to donate to the charity will be down from last time, as people just weren’t as willing to put their hands in their pockets. I guess that’s the recession for you.”

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There were still some big ticket items sold, with a bronze sculpture of famous racehorse Arkle selling for nearly �700, and a donated piece by Dr Michael Morgan from Steamers Gallery in Beer worth more than �200 was raffled off for charity.

But Graham was still confident the event had been a success. He added: “If you take it on its own merits then it was well worth the effort to put it on, and we’ll definitely do it again in 2013.”

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