Barbara Castle

Barbara was born in London and has lived and worked in South Wales since her early twenties, for 30 years in an isolated farmhouse in the Valleys and it is here that she and her husband bought up their two sons.

Having sat her Art ‘A’ level at the age of 15 Barbara would have gone to Art College but her father died that year and she was persuaded he would have preferred her to go to University.

Her subsequent career revolved around community development and regeneration, particularly of public sector estates – teaching, project development and management, research, writing and policy advice across all sectors from local and welsh government to universities, voluntary bodies, private sector companies and community groups. In 2010 Barbara was awarded an OBE for Services to Regeneration in Wales.

She has sketched and painted throughout her working life. On retiring in 2015, Barbara decided to work on her painting and see if she could finally achieve her dreams. She has written and spoken about the neglect and desecration of the typical valleys’ built form, arguing for a better appreciation of the terraces and local aesthetic. Many of her paintings are impressions and images of the Valleys’ unique townscapes, landscapes, and industrial heritage. Others are more abstract land-, sea- and urban-scape images

Barbara’s work has been shown in various galleries and venues in South Wales: The Factory in Porth; Llanover Hall, Cardiff; Barry Arts Central, and in Abergavenny and Crickhowell galleries.

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