Battle art gallery to close after 17 years

Liz Honey at the Saffron Gallery. Picture courtesy of 1066 Country Marketing. SUS-160928-142205001
Liz Honey at the Saffron Gallery. Picture courtesy of 1066 Country Marketing. SUS-160928-142205001

A popular art gallery, which has stood in Battle for the last 17 years, has closed.

The Saffron Gallery has been a part of Battle since 1999, and was taken over by Liz and Simon Honey in 2006.

But on Wednesday (September 28) the doors closed on the High Street gallery for the final time.

Saffron will take up new premises in East Grinstead shortly.

Saffron evolved from what was originally a framers gallery selling mostly open and limited edition prints, to a gallery featuring award-winning artists who are exhibited and collected worldwide.

However the gallery will maintain a reduced presence in Battle.

Part of Sussex Framing Centre in Abbey Court, which is also owned by the Honey’s, will be used as a viewing area for Saffron’s collectors based in the Battle area who would like to see any paintings or sculpture held at either the East Grinstead gallery or on Saffron’s website.

Alter Ego Gallery in Abbey Court, also owned by Liz and Simon, has already closed to accommodate expansion plans.

As well as running the Saffron Gallery, Liz also worked tirelessly for the Battle Festival and Battle Marketing Group and was a key player in creating the world-famous Keane Trail, which helped to boost tourism to Battle and the surrounding area.

Speaking to the Observer on the day of the closure, Liz said: “Today is a bittersweet day for me. I’m really excited about the opportunity of opening a new gallery in a new town with all its fresh challenges, but I’ve loved every minute of being based in Battle.

“I’ve met some wonderful people, made really good friends and, by being a member of some of the great volunteer groups in town, done some pretty amazing things I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to do anywhere else.

“Battle Festival and the Battle Marketing Group in particular do a great deal of good work in promoting the town and it’s been a pleasure being part of them. I’m delighted I can maintain a link with Battle by using the Sussex Framing Centre space so I’ll be in and out of there with paintings and sculpture on a regular basis.”

Anyone interested in renting the former gallery premises should call Campbells Estate Agents on 01424 774774.

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