Watts Gallery Trust Physical Energy Challenge 2015

Posted by Inga Garriock on 12 Aug 2015, 1:17 p.m.

On 26-27 September 2015 Watts Gallery Trustees, staff and supporters will be undertaking a relay challenge of over 100 miles following in the footsteps of the great Victorian artist G F Watts. Their journey will take in three of Watts's homes travelling from Holland Park, London to Watts Gallery – Artists' Village in Guildford, across the Solent to finally finish at Freshwater Bay on the Isle of Wight.

The Physical Energy Challenge will begin on Saturday evening when Watts Gallery Trust Brice Curator, Dr Nicholas Tromans, and chairman of Watts Gallery Trust, Richard Ormond CBE, will depart from Leighton House Museum, the home of Watts's dear friend and contemporary Lord Frederic Leighton who will be the subject of an exhibition at Watts Gallery in November, and cycle 36 miles to Guildford.

The paintbrush baton will then be taken up the following morning by development manager, Deborah Denis, who will depart from the Artists' Village at 4.30am so as to complete the 50 mile ride over the arduous Surrey Hills and reach Gilkicker Point in time for the early morning tide.

Former director of the National Portrait Gallery, Sandy Nairne CBE FSA, and director of Watts Gallery Trust, Perdita Hunt OBE, DL, will then brave the waters of the Solent covering a distance of 2.5miles across one of the busiest stretches of water in the world to reach the Isle of Wight.

Four staff members: Sarah Mitchell, Inga Garriock, Sarah James and Jo Wilks will then run the final 18.5miles from Ryde to Freshwater Bay, completing the 100 mile journey.


This 'Physical Energy' Challenge takes inspiration from one of G F Watts's masterpieces, of the same name, and aims to raise to money to help conserve and care for the Watts Collection. The Collection comprises over 7,000 works of art including sculptures, portraits, landscapes, photographs, ceramics and over 800 works on paper. It costs £21,000 per year to ensure that these important works of art are preserved for generations to come and we need your help to make sure this happens. As an independent museum that receives no regular government funding every donation is important to us.

Sandy Nairne says: "I am delighted to be swimming the Solent and am keen to attract support for all the Watts Gallery is doing to develop and share its collection as widely as possible. G F Watts was keen to honour the great deeds of ordinary people, and I will swim in that spirit."


Please support our intrepid Team Physical Energy as they embark on this daring challenge. Donate now* by clicking here, text 'WATT003' to 70970 or send a cheque payable to 'Watts Gallery' and marked for the attention of Sarah Mitchell to Watts Gallery, Down Lane, Guildford, Surrey, GU3 1DQ.

* Your donation will be processed and administered by the National Funding Scheme, operating as DONATE, a charity registered in England and Wales (1149800) and Scotland (SC045106). In addition to any text donation, you will incur your standard network message charge (based on your service provider rates). For Terms & Conditions, see www.easydonate.org