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Sudbury: Stroke Festival of Art gets a boost from BBC’s Andrew Marr

PUBLISHED: 07:52 19 March 2014 | UPDATED: 08:59 19 March 2014

Brush Strokes group exhibiting in St Peter's Church Sudbury. They have a painting donated by Andrew Marr to sell. He found that art helped him recover after he had a stroke. Left to right Marnie Bragg (art teacher) and Frank Phipps.

Brush Strokes group exhibiting in St Peter's Church Sudbury. They have a painting donated by Andrew Marr to sell. He found that art helped him recover after he had a stroke. Left to right Marnie Bragg (art teacher) and Frank Phipps.

An art exhibition in aid of an organisation that supports stroke survivors has been given a celebrity boost.

Broadcaster and journalist Andrew Marr, who suffered a stroke in January last year at the age of 53, believes his recovery has been aided by drawing and painting.

So when he was told about the Brush Stroke Festival of Art – which features the work of 70 local artists including several stroke survivors – he donated one of his works to be sold by silent auction, and another to be displayed.

The exhibition, at St Peter’s Church in Sudbury, is raising money for the charity Success After Stroke.

The group offers stroke survivors an outreach service and a number of daily activities including a weekly art group, run by art teacher Marnie Bragg.

She said: “Stroke can knock a person’s confidence as well as the physical 
problems and one of the hardest things is when it affects a person’s speech.

“Art gives survivors another way of expressing themselves and it’s great for them to be with other people who have all been through the same experience.”

The group’s work is on show until Saturday and some of the works have been made into greetings cards.

Mr Marr has loaned one painting produced before his illness and has given the group another work – featuring his bedside table – painted after he suffered the stroke.

The highest bid currently stands at £750 but exhibition organiser Lizzie Alston hopes the bids will rise.

For more information on the work of Success After Stroke visit www.successafterstroke.org.uk or call 01473 822328.

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