Wealden’s winning Christmas card

Chair with Rumsey Court Art Group
Chair with Rumsey Court Art Group

The artists in Wealden’s sheltered housing schemes have been adding some seasonal cheer to the council’s 2013 Christmas card.

The winning entry for the card competition came from the Rumsey Court Art Group who entered a painting by one of their late residents, Mrs Jenny Clark, featuring Santa Claus on a sledge. Mrs Clark died in December 2012 at 90 years and had been a founder member of the Rumsey Court Art Group.

When residents heard about the competition, they wanted Mrs Clark’s artwork to be entered as it would be a great way for her to be remembered. She lived at Rumsey Court for eight years and was the heart and soul of Rumsey, sharing many wonderful stories of her life with residents.

Runners up are Harry Wells of the Mary Burfield Court, Heathfield and Simon Roberts of Buxted Court, Buxted.

Harry Wells started painting in 2010 after attending St Wilfred’s Day Centre. Two of his paintings were chosen for Wealden Housing Calendar in 2012. In 2012 he submitted seven paintings to the Tanner Art Gallery, Bexhill for their charity auction, and all seven were snapped up. Mr Wells uses acrylics, water colours, pencil and ink in his work.

Simon Roberts decided at age 11 he wanted to be an artist and when younger studied in Florence, at the Sir John Cass College in Whitechapel and at The Ruskin School of Drawing and of Fine Art in Oxford.

Now living at Buxted Court, he began an entirely new approach to painting - digital art. Making the best use of his small apartment, he now paints digitally on a laptop which offers the ideal solution for self expression without buying expensive materials.

Council chairman Cllr Brian Redman and vice chairman, Cllr Barby Dashwood-Morris, have visited Wealden’s 12 sheltered housing schemes and been impressed by the creative activities taking place.

Cllr Redman said: Our sheltered schemes offer the opportunity for some brilliant artists to collaborate with some amazing results.

“We have art groups in a number of our schemes and make shared facilities available so residents can fulfil their own ambitions while enjoying the secure independence that Wealden’s sheltered schemes provide.

“As the vice chairman and I have been visiting our schemes and seeing all they have to offer we wanted to find a way to share their creative talents with a wider audience – and what better way to get noticed than on the Council’s Christmas card. I love the way our winning entry combines detailed artwork with a really jolly seasonal feel.”