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Pride In Medway 2009 - New Art Centre, Chatham

A charitable art centre has been nominated for a Pride in Medway award.

The New Art Centre in Chatham has been put forward twice for the community involvement award.

The first came from former mayor of Medway Cllr Val Goulden. She said: "The New Art Centre is at the centre of the community in Chatham. It's modern, vibrant, serves great food and produces wonderful art exhibitions. Manager Jo Harwood has done a fantastic job."

The centre was also nominated by Kaz Macklin from the Brook Lines branch of Project Reignite. She said: "The New Art Centre constantly strives to find new ways to reach out, either with open days, unique art exhibitions and events accessible to the hardest to reach groups, such as blind artists."

Jo Harwood said: "It is fantastic to have been nominated for a Pride in Medway award. We see ourselves as a real community hub and leading the way in the regeneration of Chatham High Street."

The New Art Centre (NAC) is the first centre of its kind in Kent. It was opened in 2002 by the Halpern Charitable Foundation to give artists a chance to develop and display their talents.

It has more than 30 studios for artists practising a wide range of disciplines - from painting and print-making to sculpture and design.

It also offers a programme of art workshops throughout the year suitable for all ages and abilities. Many of the workshops are free and run by experienced in-house artists.

The centre works with groups such as the Kent Association for the Blind, and the Pathways mental health group.

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