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Trimley church re-opens as community arts centre

PUBLISHED: 13:17 31 July 2017

Suzanne Hawkes, Helen Clarke and Jayne Lindill, the founders of the Two Sisters Arts Centre, based at the former Trimley St Mary Church. Picture: ANDREW CLARKE

Suzanne Hawkes, Helen Clarke and Jayne Lindill, the founders of the Two Sisters Arts Centre, based at the former Trimley St Mary Church. Picture: ANDREW CLARKE

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A new community arts centre serving Felixstowe, Trimley and Kirton is being unveiled this weekend.

Two Sisters Arts Centre, a community-focused venue based at the former Trimley St Mary Church, which stages a three day festival this weekend. Picture: ANDREW CLARKE Two Sisters Arts Centre, a community-focused venue based at the former Trimley St Mary Church, which stages a three day festival this weekend. Picture: ANDREW CLARKE

The centre, dedicated to championing local talent and bringing high quality touring work to the area, is the brainchild of Suzanne Hawkes, Helen Clarke, Jayne Lindill, Alison Miller and Hattie Bennett and will be based at the former St Mary’s Church in Trimley.

Re-named The Two Sisters Arts Centre, the redundant church will be run by Felixstowe Creative Arts Trust (F-CAT) which has been formed by the five local creatives to manage a lively programme of plays, music, poetry, art and dance which will be staged at the venue.

Helen Clarke said that they wanted the building to be a cultural hub for the entire community, reaching out to everyone on the Felixstowe Peninsula, breathing life into an empty building and reinstating it as part of Trimley’s historic High Road.

Two Sisters is launching with an inaugural arts festival – Felixstowe ArtsFest - over the weekend of the August 4-6. A diverse programme includes poetry, theatre, music, youth workshops and an art exhibition, Time + Tides, featuring leading artists from the Felixstowe area.

“We have the UK premiere of the hilarious but seldom-performed New Zealand play M.A.M.I.L. (Middle Aged Man in Lycra), a poetry workshop, Of Legends and Angels, which explores local legends from Black Shuck to the Wild Man of Orford, a youth drama workshop with the multi-talented local composer and performer Wade Ablitt, and a Show Songs Prom led by Martin Waddington, former musical director of the Wolsey Theatre,” said Helen Clarke.

“In addition, the church is included in the ever-popular historical promenade Felixstory 2, and the vintage bus will be pulling up throughout the weekend.”

It is also planned to repeat and expand upon the inaugural ArtsFest next year turning it into an annual event.

Suzanne Hawkes said: “The building still needs a lot of work - and funding - to transform it into the welcoming and vibrant arts space we know it can be.”

The Two Sisters venue will also be available for hire for arts-related functions such as workshops and as a rehearsal space. For further details email mail4fcat@gmail.com

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