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The E17 Art Trail allowed London Borough of Waltham Forest residents to enjoy over two weeks of great events in libraries.

The festival, for which BDS was the platinum sponsor, saw literally hundreds of open studios, street events, exhibitions, music and performances. The Art Trail is a cornerstone of the London Borough of Culture celebrations which are set to run throughout the year.

Libraries were a focal point from the opening ceremony onwards, when Festival Director, Laura Kerry announced that the borough’s Wood Street Library would display a new National Gallery acquisition by Baroque artist Artemisia Gentileschi for the duration of the Art Trail.

The painting “Self Portrait as Catherine of Alexandria” is valued in excess of £3.5 million and proved to be a major attraction among many excellent exhibitions during the festival. National Gallery staff were in the library to offer information.

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Penny Rutterford, Shahzad Asif, Sarah Armitage and Tim Reedy
Schools were busy at Walthamstow’s Central Library where children’s art tutor and illustrator, Tim Reedy held workshops to help children develop their skills in drawing cartoons of their favourite animals. BDS’s Sarah Armitage met Tim and Library Team Manager, Asif Shahzad, to see for herself the benefits derived from BDS sponsorship.

“Today I have seen how libraries, communities and sponsorship can work together to achieve fantastic results,” said Sarah.The sentiment was echoed by Penny Rutterford of event organisers, Artillery, who emphasised the increase in visitors to the borough as a whole and the opportunities generated by the BDS sponsorship.“Working with a company that believes in libraries and believes in culture in the community has been fantastic for the E17 Art Trail and great for the community,” said Penny.

Sarah was given a tour of the impressive Carnegie library by Asif and spoke with Tim and the children from Mission Grove school who attended the workshop.

“I visit libraries all over the country as part of my work but today was a rare opportunity to see how the relationship between libraries and the public is enhanced by the work we do in Dumfries,” said Sarah.

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Tim Reedy working with Mission Grove school during Sarah's visit

BDS sponsorship is set to continue with the launch of the “From Page to Pavement” project in July that will feature the work of author Benji Davies and involve residents and libraries across the whole borough.

You can read more about BDS’s support of the London Borough of Culture in our latest newsletter at https://www.bdslive.com/article/bdslife/bdslife-for-libraries-spring-2019/

Find out more about London Borough of Culture at www.wfculture19.co.uk

Find out more about Artillery and the E17 Art Trail at www.e17arttrail.co.uk

Find out more about the work of Tim Reedy at www.timreedyonline.com

Find out more about Waltham Forest Libraries at https://walthamforest.gov.uk/service-categories/libraries