Central Art Gallery

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Central Art Gallery is a real gem. Located above the library on Old Street in Ashton-under-Lyne, these beautiful gallery spaces were once the studio spaces for the George Hegginbottom Technical Arts College. Today the former studios play host to a varied programme of temporary exhibitions with artwork from regional artists.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Open: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 10am - 12.30pm, 1pm - 4pm
Thursday: 1pm - 7pm
Saturday:10am - 1pm

Closed Sunday and Monday

Admission charges

Please check before visiting.

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.

Calm During the Storm: Wartime and the Embroiderers’ Guild

  • 22 April — 1 July 2017 *on now

EMBROIDERY has been proven to have a calming and therapeutic effect in times of stress, and never more so than in wartime.
“Calm During the Storm”, which is about to open at Tameside Central Art Gallery in Ashton, features items stitched by convalescing soldiers, their wives and mothers, and others touched by conflict.
Embroidery kept them occupied, soothed their anxieties and even allowed them to display their patriotism.
The earliest exhibits are sweetheart pincushions. There are also silk postcards, made on a hand-embroidery machine. These were sold to servicemen to send to loved ones back home.
From the Second World War there are needlework kits produced by Briggs and Co, under the Penelope brand, which were sold specifically for use by HM Forces. The work by disabled ex-servicemen is particularly poignant.
Some items were bought by the Embroiders’ Guild at car-boot sales, antique fairs and auctions, although these often came with no information. We can only guess who stitched them and what their stories were.
Magazines such as Stitchcraft feature in the exhibition as they published hints and instructions for making the best of wartime restrictions and encouraged knitting for the forces. Transfer designs were very popular, and magazines published patriotic designs for women to create at home.
Contemporary pieces also feature, such as a response to the Afghan War by Cobie Erskine and works by Lisa Earley, Fiona Rainford and Charlotte Sewell.
Embroidery from Tameside’s Manchester Regiment collection has been added to the display for its Ashton showing.

Suitable for

  • Any age
Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Stitch in Time image

Stitch in Time - Sewing Circle

  • 14 July 2017 10am-1pm
  • 28 July 2017 10am-1pm
  • 11 August 2017 10am-1pm
  • 25 August 2017 10am-1pm
  • 8 September 2017 10am-1pm
  • 22 September 2017 10am-1pm
  • 13 October 2017 10am-1pm
  • 27 October 2017 10am-1pm
  • 10 November 2017 10am-1pm
  • 24 November 2017 10am-1pm
  • 8 December 2017 10am-1pm

The group meets at Central Art Gallery every 2nd and 4th Friday every month in the morning from 10:00 - 13:00. Come along for the whole session or just drop in. It's free!
Whether you are new to sewing or an expert stitcher, this group is for everyone to come along to, learn new skills and most of all have fun!

Suitable for

  • 18+



Knit and Natter

Knit and Natter

  • 27 June 2017 10am-1pm
  • 11 July 2017 From 10am
  • 25 July 2017 10am-1pm
  • 8 August 2017 10am-1pm
  • 22 August 2017 10am-1pm
  • 12 September 2017 10am-1pm
  • 26 September 2017 10am-1pm
  • 10 October 2017 10am-1pm
  • 24 October 2017 10am-1pm
  • 14 November 2017 10am-1pm
  • 28 November 2017 10am-1pm
  • 12 December 2017 10am-1pm

Relax, Meet people, Share ideas, Get creative, Have a good chin wag.
Whether you're an absolute beginner or an experienced yarnster, this knitting group is for everyone (men included!)
Meets 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month.

Suitable for

  • 18+
  • Not suitable for children



Tameside Open Art Exhibition

  • 6 July — 9 September 2017

Calling all Tameside artists - the Tameside Open Art Exhibition needs you!
IT’S art for art’s sake as the 10CC song once had it. No matter what your ability or style is, so long as you live in Tameside you can exhibit your work at the Tameside Open Art Exhibition.
It’s been running for more than 20 years and is special in that it allows any Tameside resident to submit work and have it displayed in a professional gallery setting.
Paintings range from traditional watercolours to more abstract oils and cover a variety of subjects. There are also photographs and examples of mixed media work. Most of the items on display are available for sale at reasonable prices.
Collections curator Garry Smith said: “The Tameside Open Art Exhibition is a very special event. Even though a lot of the work is provided by amateurs, viewers never fail to be impressed by the skill and imagination of the entries.
“Opportunities like this are very rare and that’s why we want as many artists as possible, whether they are amateur or professional, to send us their work so we can proudly exhibit the considerable artistic talents we know so many Tamesiders possess.”
Submissions run from Saturday, June 24, until Saturday, July 1. Application forms are available from Tameside Central Art Gallery, Old Street, Ashton, or can be downloaded at www.tameside.gov.uk/museumsgalleries/central
The media are invited to preview of the exhibition on Thursday, July 6, from 5 to 6.30pm.
Tameside Open Art Exhibition: July 6 to September 9 at Tameside Central Art Gallery, Old Street, Ashton, OL6 7SG. The gallery is open: Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 10am to 12.30pm and 1 to 4pm, Saturday: 10am to 1pm. Closed: Monday, Thursday and Sunday.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Central Art Gallery
Old Street




0161 342 2650

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.