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Picturesque Painswick becomes a Canvas for Creativity

ACP1On Sunday 13th July, creative people of all ages, ranging from students to established designers, will arrive in Painswick to display their astonishing creations on a London style catwalk in the village’s iconic St Mary’s churchyard for this year’s one-of-a-kind ACP Festival.


The festivities kick off on Saturday afternoon at 3pm, when the Paris-based quartet Hermes will perform a recital as part of the Cheltenham Festivals, followed by a display of classic and veteran cars around the village.


The Festival, now in its fifth year, is looking to be bigger and better than ever, with more than 80 designers signed up to create works of art, displayed on the body, in line with this year’s themes of ‘Reflections’, ‘Invasions’ and ‘Legends’. The event will be compered by TV celebrities Dr Dawn Harper from Channel 4’s Embarrassing Bodies and Lisa Maxwell from Loose Women.


Lady Gaga designer Adnan Bayyat and Harriet Verney (Isabella Blow’s niece and Vogue contributor) are among the names from the worlds of fashion and art announced as judges at this year’s event. Other confirmed judges include contemporary artist Daniel Chadwick, abstract artist Rachel Howard, Denise Innes from the British School of Millinery and professional artist Swarez.


In 2013, 10,000 people flocked to view the incredible outfits, including Radio 1’s Nick Grimshaw and local pop sensation Lily Allen.


As well as the churchyard catwalk show, the streets of Painswick will be filled with a colourful array of stalls selling hand crafted goods and food from local suppliers. This year there will also be circus skills’ workshops amongst the street fun and entertainment, and the pinnacle of the day will be an impressive flypast from RAF Dakota. Musicians will perform on 2 stages in the centre of the town, from 11.30am until 5pm, and on the main stage in the churchyard between catwalks and from 6 – 8pm, with headliners Hip Kiss, featuring Patsy Gamble and Painswick-resident Muddy, guitarist from Wishbone Ash and the Tom Gee Band who recently wowed at the Free stage at Cheltenham Jazz Festival.


Cheltenham based, BPE Solicitors are the Festival’s headline sponsors. Their Business Development Director, Claire Harrison said: “We are thrilled to be involved with the festival this year, it is a brilliant reflection of the entrepreneurial spirit of the Cotswolds and it is set to be a fantastic day out for all the family”.



ACP is an artistic venture that encourages creative people of all ages, and from all walks of life, to participate in making works of art that are displayed on the body. A wealth of design talent - ranging from school children to professionals - will enter the Cotswolds’ most talked about event, displaying the highest levels of creativity, skill and imagination, dressing their models in mind-boggling materials ranging from electrical wire and clip ties to full body paint. Models will present the designs on catwalk nestled in the St Mary’s Churchyard yew trees.


As well as cash prizes, the festival competition offers work placements as prizes to college students, including opportunities with fabric designers Nancy Parker and Lewis and Wood.


ACP is a registered charity, and is run by an enthusiastic local team. The charity works with schools, colleges, local businesses and arts enterprises to encourage creativity and a love of the arts. The festival’s headline sponsor for this year is Cheltenham based law firm BPE Solicitors; a firm whose belief in the spirit of entrepreneur fits in well with the essence of the festival. “Without the mix of local business support, creative talent and enthusiastic volunteers, the Festival simply wouldn’t happen” explained one of ACP’s Trustees, Debra Drew.

Admission to the festival will be £5 on the day, or £4 in advance, children under 12 go free. See website for details www.canvasforcreativity.com

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