A “MINI arts hub” could be set up in Henley town centre for members of the public to buy tickets and pick up leaflets about forthcoming events.
Members of the new Henley Arts Club are to meet representatives of the town council and South Oxfordshire District Council next month to discuss the idea.
The club also plans to set up a dedicated website and organise regular networking events as well as investigate the possibility of establishing a community arts centre which could seat 500. The club’s first social evening was held on Wednesday last week at a private house in Highmoor, attended by 60 members including representatives of the Henley Festival, the Kenton Theatre, the Henley Literary Festival, Henley Symphony Orchestra and Henley Choral Society. Suzanne Yeates, events manager of the Henley Festival, said the group was set up in April last year after breaking away from the Henley Partnership.
She said: “The arts are so vibrant in the town and a few of us got together and said, ‘We ought to do something’.
“Since the loss of the Regal concert hall we have needed an arts centre and over the years various ways were looked at, such as the possibility of incorporating it into the new Townlands development, but that didn’t get anywhere. It has always been on the back burner. Initially, rather than push for an arts centre, we would like to establish an arts hub in a central place, a window on the world so to speak, where there is a box office and an opportunity for the various cultural and arts organisations to publicise their events.”
The party was hosted by Charlotte Pudney of Papillon Events, who is a member of the steering committee. The guests were entertained by roving artist Charles Burns drawing silhouettes and pianist Darius Halpern.