Spotlight shines on town’s amateur photographers

Morpeth Matters photographic exhibition organisers Rachael Hogg, Bob Robertson and Barbara Ross with Mayor Nic Best at the launch event at Morpeth Town Hall.
Morpeth Matters photographic exhibition organisers Rachael Hogg, Bob Robertson and Barbara Ross with Mayor Nic Best at the launch event at Morpeth Town Hall.

An eye-catching event and exhibition organised by a popular Facebook group has given a bone cancer charity a major funding boost.

Members of Morpeth Matters came up with the idea to showcase the talents of local residents after being very impressed by many of the photographs that were submitted to the online page.

The all-day free exhibition in the Town Hall gave people the opportunity to view 150 images of Morpeth.

The evening beforehand, there was a ticketed preview event which offered a glass of wine and a mince pie and a chance to meet and talk with some of the photographers, among other things.

The total amount collected for Henry Dancer Days – a charity set up by member Jane Nattrass in memory of her son to provide help for families of children with cancer, particularly Osteosarcoma and Ewings sarcoma – is in the region of £3,000.

One of the organising committee members, Barbara Ross, said: “We’re all delighted with the success of this initiative and we have received many positive comments from those who attended.

“More than 200 people came along to the exhibition, which was very much focused on the beauty of Morpeth and what the town has to offer, and it gave us the opportunity to celebrate the skills of the area’s amateur photographers.

“We also had a good attendance at the preview event. It was a great evening and as well as the food and drink, there was live music and an auction with lots such as a weekend in Edinburgh, a ride in a Bentley and a round of golf.

“Sales of prints brought in almost £500 and there were many donations made during the exhibition. I know that Jane (Nattrass) is delighted with what we have achieved.”

Further funds were raised through the sale of caricatures drawn at the event and exhibition by Jan Szymczuk.

Another member of the organising committee, Coun David Bawn, said: “We wanted to put on something to celebrate our wonderful town of Morpeth and what better way than to gather together images produced by residents of the town for the enjoyment of all?

“We were keen to ensure that this excellent community exhibition was free of charge to the public, so as many people as possible could attend. This also meant they were able to give a donation to Henry Dancer Days that they could afford.”

Members of Morpeth Matters – www.facebook.com/morpethmatters – use the page to discuss a range of issues in the town and post local history information and photographs.