Watts Gallery Green Tiles
The green lustre of the green ceramic tiles on the front gables of Watts Gallery are glowing in the September sunshine. Hidden behind brown paint for many years, the rich colour brings back a glimpse of the splendour of the original Watts Gallery when it was opened by G F Watts on what appeared to be a cold Good Friday, 1 April 1904. I am delighted that despite the scaffolding being up for over a year, the wisteria has survived the battering and the climbing rose has tried to soften the appearance of the poles by intertwining its flowers across the porch scaffold.
Restoration and renovation is romping ahead. The Richard Jefferies Gallery ( formerly the Sunken Gallery - and it was sinking beneath the rain and snow) is beginning to offer a new experience, of light, space and opportunity. The Exhibitions Gallery, formerly the apprentice potter's games room, now looks fit for purpose to receive the loan of Watts's masterpieces from the Tate. The new Showcase Gallery suddenly is assuming a character of its own with its new rooflight design. This is where we will show an exhibition of Hope for the opening of the Gallery in the spring.
I have been again encouraged and warmed by the support that has poured in for our extreme fundraising efforts of swimming the Solent. Thank you so much. We are hoping for good weather this weekend, and with a fair wind, it would be so wonderful if the achievements could help us to close the gap on the Hope emergency appeal which still stands at £75,000 shortfall.