Banbury art shop owner sets up mother’s memory fund to help underprivileged young adults

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Barry Whitehouse, owner of The Artery, in Banbury, with his mother, Margaret, who died of cancer last year. NNL-170702-095327001

Margaret Whitehouse, the mother of The Artery owner Barry, died last year from rapidly growing cancer after a three-month battle.

Today, a year after his death, Mr. Whitehouse has established a memorial fund that provides free art lessons to three underprivileged young people.

Speaking to the Banbury Guardian, Mr Whitehouse said his mother was an art lover and helped out with the shop.

He said: “She was afraid of being forgotten. I thought about how the store might honor her memory, so I created a memorial fund for 18-25 year olds who haven’t had an arts education.

“We didn’t have a lot of money when I was young, but my parents were very supportive of my art and my exhibitions. It’s a great way to give back to the artistic community.

“My mother was more into crafts than art, even though she painted and drew. She used to write her own stories and went to art college for a while, but as she got older she dabbled in crafts and card making.

The fund is launched on March 2, which would have been Ms Whitehouse’s 73rd birthday. It will be offered to young adults who have missed out on opportunities during their studies in mainstream education and whose financial situation does not allow them to pay.

Once the fund is satisfied, applicants meet the criteria, they will be able to participate in one of The Artery workshops for free for six months starting in July, for a total of almost £ 1,000 in free arts education each time. times.

Every six months, the fund will be opened to three new applicants.

While The Artery will foot the bill for the lessons, it is hoped that if further funding becomes available the program could be expanded to more applicants.

Anyone wishing to donate to the fund can do so.

The Artery also launched the Margaret Whitehouse Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement. It will be an annual award given to one of its students who has excelled in a particular job.

The winner will receive the prize along with a £ 50 gift certificate to spend in the shop during the Banbury Art Festival, which will be held on June 11 in conjunction with the Banbury and District Show.

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