Round Tower opens as local art gallery

The Round Tower in Old Portsmouth.
The Round Tower in Old Portsmouth.

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THE iconic Round Tower in Old Portsmouth will open to the public tomorrow as a contemporary art gallery exhibiting work by local people.

It is the first time the tower has been used for this kind of enterprise in its 500-year history, and will involve the work of more than 30 artists, designers and photographers from across the city.

Artists will have to combat damp conditions, 15th century walls and precarious flooring, but the unique venue is a rare opportunity to exhibit in an historic setting.

Claire Sambrook, who is a member of the Strong Island network, which came up with the art gallery idea, said: ‘This is a gallery by local people for local people and an opportunity for the city’s creative talent to demonstrate their interpretation of what “Strong Island” means to them.

‘We’re incredibly lucky to have access to such an unusual building and to open it up to the people of Portsmouth for them to use and enjoy.

‘I hope everyone will come and see a new concept opening up inside a piece of history.’

The project is being run with the University of Portsmouth and the council.

The exhibition is being launched tomorrow from 6pm to 9pm.

The exhibition runs from April 16 to May 3, Tuesdays to Sundays from 10am until 3pm.