THE beautiful surroundings of a 17th century house provided the perfect setting for an art exhibition.
More than 200 people visited The Elms in Old Bedhampton over the bank holiday.
Around 200 paintings from local artists went on display.
The exhibition is an annual fundraising event for The Manor Trust, a charity that helps to run two retirement facilities in Old Bedhampton, including apartments at The Elms and residential care at the nearby Lodge.
Around £1,000 was raised for charity over the three days.
Bernard Stanley, one of the founding trustees, said: ‘We had 200 paintings by various local artists.
‘We sold a number of the paintings. It was very pleasant.
‘We were serving cream teas and cakes, so everybody enjoyed it – and it’s in a rather nice room.’
The exhibition was held in The Waterloo Room of The Elms, which is a Grade II* listed building in Lower Road. Early in the 19th century the owner, Sir Theophilus Lee, invited his second cousin Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington, to dine there, commissioning a room in his honour.
The trust’s patron to this day is The Duke of Wellington.
The trust was founded in 1967 after residents in Old Bedhampton became concerned that beautiful properties were in danger of being destroyed.
They rallied round to buy The Manor House, next to St Thomas’ Church, after the land was earmarked for five houses.
The Manor House became a retirement facility for many years until changes in government policy – whereby more people are cared for in their own homes – meant it was no longer needed.
It is currently being sold and the proceeds will be used to help maintain the trusts’ other two properties.
Mr Stanley said Old Bedhampton remained a gem.
‘It’s an oasis,’ he said. ‘It keeps the village atmosphere which is nice.’