CAPTION: Thorverton Parish Church have created a virtual exhibition on Facebook after having to cancel the exhibition due to COVID-19 (Artwork by Carolyn Barker)

East Devon Arts Festival Goes Online

Posted: 14th August, 2020

Each year, the Parish Church of St Thomas of Canterbury in Thorverton is turned into an art gallery for the East Devon Arts Festival (EDAF).

Thorverton Parish Church is turned into an art gallery each year for the East Devon Arts Festival

This year would have marked the 50th year the festival has been running, but due to COVID-19, the church has been unable to hold the event and has instead created virtual art and craft exhibitions on Facebook.

The Arts Festival is usually a significant fundraising activity of the church, raising approximately £6000 each year. The cancellation of the event has meant that there is a large financial shortfall without the income generated by the Arts Festival.

This led to the church launching the EDAF Appeal so that individuals can support Thorverton Parish Church by contributing on a donation page.

Royston Kershaw is a churchwarden at St Thomas of Canterbury. He said: “Every year, our village comes together to do this, and lots of people help us run the exhibition in all sorts of ways, it’s great for the community.”

We know that they’re willing to support the church in different ways, some give money, some give their time, and not only the people in the village but the artists and contributors are great supporters of the exhibition, so we decided to launch an appeal.”

So far, the appeal has raised approximately £3500.

Royston said: “It’s a real measure of how much support the festival has, and it’s a sign of the local goodwill to the church, even among people who don’t go to church very often.”

So that’s what started us off, and then one of the exhibitors came up with the idea of setting up an online gallery, and I realised we could quite easily use Facebook to do an art exhibition, and it’s been quite popular, we’ve reached thousands of people!”

Some of the crafts available for purchase through the EDAF virtual exhibition

The reason for doing the exhibition isn’t just for earning money, but it’s to create a platform for people to exhibit their work, and to showcase some fantastic artists, which is very worthwhile.”

You can view the exhibition on the EDAF Facebook pages by clicking here for the art gallery and here for the craft gallery. The exhibition also supports the EDAF Appeal as the church receives a small commission when pieces are sold through the online galleries.

Thorverton Parish Church would be very grateful for any donations which you can do by clicking on the “Shop Now” button which will take you to the donation page, or by clicking here.

If you would like to make a donation but don’t wish to do so online, please email for instructions.

The exhibition is still growing so if you want to see more, make sure to ‘Like’ and ‘Follow’ the pages on Facebook.