The Sherborne: Historic house arts venue hosts first exhibition

Image source, David Martin

Image caption,

Sherborne House was previously used as a school

A Georgian mansion that is being transformed into an arts venue has opened its first exhibition.

The Sherborne, at Sherborne House in Dorset, is due to officially open in May after a multimillion-pound restoration project.

Paintings by Paul Jones are on display in the house until 6 April while work on the rest of the site is completed.

Viewing is by appointment only and tickets, which went on sale last month, have sold out.

Dorset Visual Arts, which will be based at the completed venue, will produce a regularly changing exhibition, display and events programme.

Creative director Paul Newman said: “There will be live performances, workshops, a bar, bistro, shop, sculpture garden and grounds.

“It’s been an incredible challenge to be involved with and we can’t wait to to get it fully open at the end of May for everybody.”

Sherborne House, in Newland, Sherborne, dates back to the 1720s and is owned by the Sherborne House Trust, which has been raising funds to restore the Grade I listed building.

For most of the 1900s it was used as a school but, after laying empty for years, it had been placed on the English Heritage Buildings At Risk register.

Plans to turn the crumbling mansion into an arts venue were approved in 2021.

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