The Arts Society, Huntingdonshire


We are the Huntingdonshire branch of the national Arts Society, whose mission statement is ‘Enriching lives through the Arts’.  We provide a programme of monthly lectures in a central St. Ives location, occasional study days, visits to various exhibitions, volunteer groups and an annual short holiday.

Please click on the links in the side bar (for mobiles on the menu links) for information on how to find us (Location) and (How to join). The link to the full programme of lectures for the current year, 2022 – 23, is now available through the link on the side bar.

Please note that all lectures start at 2.30 p.m. unless otherwise advised.

As you walk in have you noticed the notelets for sale?

The illustrations are from entries in CAYAC, (Cambridge Area Young Artists Competition).

The next lecture at 2.30 pm on April 12th is ‘The Culture of Ukraine’ by Rosamund Bartlett and will take place in the St. Ives Corn Exchange.


Whatever the future brings, there is no doubting the feeling that the Ukrainian nation is being reborn. But what do we really know about this country, the second largest in Europe, which has struggled to be free for hundreds of years?  This lecture tells the Ukrainian story through the history of the shared culture which binds its proud people together. We will explore the sacred art and architecture of Kyiv, and its vital links to the Byzantine Empire, and consider the distinctive characters of two very different cities, Odesa and Lviv.

We will also look at the rich folk culture of Ukraine’s rural heartland, beginning with its music and the secret codes embedded in its ancient folk embroidery tradition, which have exerted a surprising impact on modern painting and contemporary haute couture.  Last but not least, this lecture promises to unravel the mysteries of wild Cossack dancing and the myriad recipes for borshch.

Rosamund Bartlett is an acknowledged authority on the culture of Russia and its neighbouring colonies who has been travelling to Ukraine for over thirty years. She is a biographer of Russia’s greatest anti-war activist Tolstoy, and her annotated translation of Anna Karenina was published to acclaim by Oxford University Press in 2014.  She is also a biographer and translator of Chekhov, who had a Ukrainian grandmother, and grew up close to the border near the Black Sea.  Her edition of Chekhov’s letters for Penguin Classics includes many written from his dacha in Sumy.  In 2008 she launched a campaign to rescue Chekhov’s house in the Crimea, and remains a Trustee of the Anton Chekhov Foundation, a UK-registered charity.



Our next visit is to Felbrigg Hall, near Cromer in Norfolk on Wednesday 7th June. One of the most elegant country houses in East Anglia, the Hall was built in stages beginning in Tudor times. It is set in a vast estate with a lake, a delightful walled garden and a number of marked walks through fields and woodland. Felbrigg was bequeathed to the National Trust in 1969.

DATE           Wednesday 7th JUNE

COACH        £23.00 (includes tip for driver)


                     NON-MEMBERS  – £12.00  payable on entrance

The coach will depart the Burgess Hall, St Ives at 8.45am. (Dews coach)







Illustration courtesy of the Fitzwilliam Museum

More than 200 objects from three of the largest Mediterranean islands – Cyprus, Crete and Sardinia – will be seen in the UK for the first time and show how islanders lived every day – their communities, memories, myths, art and creativity.



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Last updated 14th March 2023. Webmaster: Bob Woodham

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