Art Show Raises Funds for New Autism Centre at Aycliffe

art show


The Great North Arts and Culture Show was held at the Wynyard Rooms Billingham early August to raise money for Veterans At Ease and the North East Autism Society’s appeal to raise £2m for a centre in Newton Aycliffe for children and adults with autism.

The weekend festival of arts, crafts and family entertainment raised £1,600 which will also be match funded by Barclays Bank.

Organiser John Palliser, is an English Military professional and painter of patriotic art. His work captures Military Medieval and Regimental Art scenes from all historical eras, and founded

Having an autistic 5 year old son he  has worked tirelessly with his wife Melanie to make the Great North Arts & Culture Show a success to support this venture, along with the Spennymoor based Verteran At Ease who shared the money raised.

The vision behind the centre is to improve the range of specialist services available across the region, including care, education, short breaks and residential accommodation, whilst improving the scope of family support and outreach services.

Pupils from NEAS Thornhill Park School in Sunderland attended the festival and exhibited work from their art programme, which saw some of the pupils receive GCSE level qualifications.

Teacher from NEAS, Ian Burke said: “Over the past year art has been a major focus in our curriculum, ranging from the introduction of a short G.C.S.E programme to ‘drawing and talking’ as a form of art therapy. This is proving to be incredibly successful in helping pupils with their communication skills. The art programme is all-inclusive and has been designed to enable all pupils, regardless of ability to excel in and enjoy art.”

Marketing Officer for NEAS, Lisa Taylor said: “Our pupils have all worked extremely hard over the last term and the exhibition was a fantastic opportunity to showcase their achievements.

Events like this make such a difference to our fundraising and I’d like to thank everyone who attended the event to make it a great success.”

For more information how you can support NEAS with their appeal please visit or call 0191 410 9974.

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