David Warburton Introduces Maria Miller MP to Frome's Arts, Culture and Charities. Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport visits Black Swan Arts and meets OpenStoryTellers.

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By rubato | Monday, January 13, 2014, 10:33

On Friday 10 January, David Warburton, the Conservative Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Somerton and Frome, welcomed the Rt. Hon. Maria Miller MP, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport on an official visit to Frome.  

Ms Miller visited contemporary arts and exhibition centre Black Swan Arts and was introduced to OpenStoryTellers, a charity dedicated to enhancing the lives of people with learning and communication difficulties through story-telling.  Prior to her appointment as a cabinet minister, Ms Miller was Minister for Disabled People (2010 – 2012).

David Warburton explained, "Since my selection a year ago as Frome's prospective parliamentary candidate, I have been overwhelmed by the sheer scale and vibrancy of the town's arts and culture scene."  

He continued, "Frome has so much to offer in art, music, theatre and literature that I felt it was important to bring the Secretary of State for Culture and Media to visit the town and experience for herself how Frome has established itself as a unique and inspiration centre of culture.  I felt it was equally important to introduce her to one of Frome's most enterprising charities, OpenStoryTellers, which does so much to support local people with learning difficulties."

At the heart of Frome, Black Swan Arts is a popular arts centre offering galleries, workshops and events.  Ms Miller met Luke Miller, chairman of Black Swan Arts, and viewed some of the centre's current exhibitions. The minister was also introduced to Humphrey Barnes, chairman of Frome's Memorial Theatre, and many other contributors to cultural life in Frome.

Based at Black Swan Arts,  OpenStoryTellers is a unique community group dedicated to enriching the lives of people with learning and communication difficulties through the use of narrative and stories.  David Warburton first visited OpenStoryTellers last year and introduced Maria Miller MP to the director, Cindy Moxham together with founding member and trustee Brian Marshall and the group's administrator, Emma Warren.__________________________________________________

Maria Miller MP has been the Member of Parliament for Basingstoke since 2005.  She was Minister for Disabled People from 2010 to 2012, when she was appointed Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, and Minister for Women and Equalities.

David Warburton was chosen to represent Somerton and Frome by hundreds of local Conservative members. He lives in Mendip with his wife Harriet and their two children. David trained as a classical composer and taught at an inner-city secondary school before going into a successful business career.  To follow David's campaigns for Somerton and Frome Conservatives go to www.davidwarburton.org.uk, find him on Facebook and Twitter @DJWarburton.

The OpenStoryTellers -  www.openstorytellers.org.uk

Black Swan Arts - www.blackswan.org.uk



  • Profile image for redfrome

    Probably attending out of pity then FromeSurvivor, especially as his party and their Neocon colleagues seem so intent on not supporting them in central Government. Did you see our illustrious Coalition and local MP failing to back the Food Banks in the house recently?

    You can't blagg the electorate with a few photographs, we know the real Tory ideology.

    By redfrome at 17:19 on 16/01/14

  • Profile image for aomboyden

    Good to see Government Ministers appreciating Frome's cultural facilities and arts scene, which was built up over many years by volunteers, local groups and (previously) Somerset County Council and (currently still) Frome Town Council. Don't forget Frome Festival, the Merlin Theatre, and Cheese & Grain amongst other facilities! I'd encourage everyone to visit and support our local arts facilities to help keep Frome special.
    But I have to say, as David W is the Conservative candidate wanting to be elected as our next MP in 2015, and is clearly on the campaign trail now, I hope David and Maria also discussed lessons to be learned from the damaging cuts by Conservative run Somerset County and Mendip District Councils in 2011 to the Frome arts scene (including Black Swan Arts and Merlin Theatre), which was uncoordinated and damaging all at once. Both the Black Swan and Merlin have survived and thrived since through the very hard work of their trustees, volunteers and management, despite our Conservative councils' policies, not because of it.
    So I hope that all parties and councils (not just Frome Town Council) can learn to appreciate the importance of arts and culture to the local economy, and give it the appropriate level of support in their decisions.
    See here for news of that at the time - http://tinyurl.com/ovxds2z and http://tinyurl.com/ov5nubo
    Adam Boyden (Frome Town and Mendip District Councillor, Frome College ward, Lib Dem)

    By aomboyden at 12:36 on 15/01/14

  • Profile image for FromeSurvivor

    Funnily enough he was at the Bridge Cafe last week cooking a meal for the Active and In Touch charity. And he has been to food banks many times - check out his Facebook page! Just saying...

    By FromeSurvivor at 18:31 on 14/01/14

  • Profile image for redfrome

    You should have popped into the food bank, bridge cafe or other such venues whilst in the area, you can see what your party has done to the real culture in our towns and cities.

    By redfrome at 16:18 on 13/01/14

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