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News: Duo use their Talents to help raise funds for The Customs House

Duo use their Talents to help raise funds for The Customs House

Two Lawe Top legends have joined forces to help their local arts centre.

Artist and animator Sheila Graber and writer Janis Blower have combined their talents to raise funds for The Customs House in South Shields.

Sheila has been selling her art in aid of The Customs House via an online exhibition and brought in long-time friend Janis to give her own insights into some of the sights Sheila has caught in her drawings of the Lawe Top over the years.

Dubbed Lowdown on the Lawe, Janis uses her much-loved style to tell the story of the ‘Victorian streets that criss-cross a substantial part of The Lawe’, feeding in facts and her own personal memories.

The original artworks range from £60 to £400 with all proceeds from the more expensive pieces and 50% of the others going to The Customs House charity. Sheila has also donated profits to Willow Cats Adoption Centre.  Sheila said: "When I started looking through my old art work of the Lawe Top, drawn when I lived there from the 1950s-60s, I thought... Aha, who knows more about the Lawe Top than anyone? Janis!  She kindly agreed to bring the whole 'online exhibition' alive with her vast knowledge that she condenses into stories full of information, humanity and humour. It has been a pleasure to work with her and her words again.”

Former Shields Gazette features writer Janis, best known for her columns Women’s World and Cookson Country, said: "The Lawe Top is a special place for Sheila and myself. Her beautiful paintings and drawings of it are, for me, instantly recognisable and evocative, and it's been lovely to have the opportunity to share some of the history and stories that I grew up with of what is still my home.  I hope folk enjoy these glimpses, in words and pictures, of this historic part of the town, while at the same time supporting a place that's close to both our hearts."

To view the work of Sheila and Janis go to:

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