Jeremy Hunt Visits Watts Gallery Following Restoration


COMPTON.- Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt gave a special preview of Watts Gallery in Compton, Surrey on Friday 13 May 2011 prior to its public launch next month. The gallery, dedicated to the art of the celebrated Victorian artist, George Frederic Watts, will reopen to the public on Saturday 18 June 2011, following its £11 million restoration. Having been placed on the English Heritage At Risk Register, the Gallery’s plight came to public attention when it narrowly missed winning the final of BBC’s Restoration Village in 2006. The project subsequently received major funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund (totalling £4.9m) and many generous individuals, trusts and foundations. In his own lifetime, George Frederic Watts OM RA (1817-1904) was widely considered to be the greatest painter of the Victorian age. He was an outstanding portraitist, sculptor, landscape painter and sy