The Great Eastern


Out here in the sticks we don’t get exposed to quite the same level of cultural activity as those of you in the wild and frightening conurbations I read so much about in the papers. In fact thanks to the decisions of the great and good the low level we are exposed to was almost extinguished entirely last year when our local Arts Centre faced closure. Thankfully the threat of this closure stirred some of the much greater and much, err, gooder to gather together in a determined effort to ensure that those who know the price of everything but the value of nothing didn’t win the argument.

And the good news is they didn’t.

We still have an Arts Centre, an Arts Centre whose admirable vision is to “reinvigorate the historic heart of culture in King’s Lynn as a beacon for social regeneration” by creating “a lively and accessible arts hub that engages communities, raises aspirations, develops employability skills and embeds opportunities for social enterprise”. Good eh ?

So it’s perhaps fitting that the first exhibition to open after moving to their new independent Trust status is the Eastern Open.

Now in it’s 43rd year the Eastern Open is an exhibition which is both older than me and much better looking. I’ve been visting this annual exhibition, that attracts entries from the seven counties within the eastern region, for more years than I care to remember and it’s always well well worth visiting.

Back in September of 2010 I wrote :

So if you’re local to me I recommend you a) visit the King’s Lynn Art’s Centre as often as you can whilst it’s still in it’s current state and b) write to your local Councillor expressing your concern around the suggestion of downgrading the provision of support to the arts in West Norfolk, because quite frankly when it’s gone it’s gone.

Thankfully I no longer need to recommend you write to your local Councillor, (although free to give them a hard time about something), however even though the threat of it’s closure has passed you really should visit as often as you can because the culture in King’s Lynn does need reinvigorating, (in fact probably just vigorating), and as such the fine people involved at the Arts Centre need your support more than ever.

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