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Sunday, 5 March 2017

Message from the Chairman

As those present at the AGM already know, I have been elected to take on the role of chairman now that Sam Manley has stepped down. I think it is worth reflecting a moment on what has been achieved by the society in the three years of Sam's stewardship. It can perhaps be summed up by something a member said to me: "Sam brought the society into the 21st century". 
Sam has brought through a steady stream of initiatives that have broadened the appeal of the society, increased it's outreach and participation, and heightened public awareness. Sam has managed to maintain the relevance of the society in this new digital age. We have a website, at the heart of which is a blog. It was a superb idea, that keeps members posted with news and information in a way that the old newsletter was never able to do. We have the monthly "Spotlight" feature
We have a Facebook presence and a YouTube video channel. We have been involved in the Fringe Festival, in the art trail, the paint jam which Sam began and ran, workshops, and creative collaborations with poets in 'Words for Art'. We have found alternative accommodation for our exhibitions following the withdrawal of facilities by Ludlow College. We have permanent exhibitions in the Pea Green Cafe and in St Laurence's Church. We made a splendid celebration of the society's 70th birthday, with the anniversary project book. All these things and more have happened under Sam's careful eye, at the same time as continuing the traditional core activities of education and exhibition which have always been central to the Society. 
We have so much to thank Sam for, and I'm sure you will all join me in saying a big thank you, and wishing him the very best in his next endeavours. We will follow your career with interest. Thank you Sam.
John Jarvis

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