Friends of The Burton Art Gallery and Museum logo

Become a Friend of The Burton

Become a Friend of The Burton and support the work we do.

The Friends and what we do

Thomas Burton, a local businessman, established the Burton Gallery and Museum in 1951 in memory of his artist daughter, Mary, who died in 1949.  He also founded the Friends of The Burton in 1952

Friends of The Burton is a charity (Reg No 281466) that supports The Burton by fundraising, sponsorship of events and acquisitions, and promotion. The Friends hold fundraising events and exhibitions, support local artists, and keep members informed of the events taking place at the gallery.

Over the years, the Friends have proved to be essential to the well-being of The Burton. In the early days, they provided the funds for many of the practical features of the Gallery and in the late 1980s, when the building was deteriorating, they raised £65,000 towards the cost of the refurbishment.

The Friends were responsible for raising £50,000 to purchase and display the Ceramic Collection, a recognition of Bideford’s important past as a pottery town, and more recently they contributed towards the purchase of the James Ravilious photographic collection, An English Eye.

Through their financial contributions, the Friends have made many projects possible including The Burton’s Young Friends Programme, Razzle Dazzle, and the Art Box.

The Friends have a membership of around 350 and their fundraising activities continue to allow them to make essential financial contributions to the cost of maintaining and preserving the building, paying for fittings, furniture, exhibitions, school visits and the restoration of some exhibits.

They work closely with the staff and Trustees of The Burton and play an important role in promoting and raising its profile regionally and nationally.

Benefits of becoming a Friend

If you decide to become a friend of The Burton you will be entitled to invitations to most Private Views, concessions on admission to any chargeable exhibitions, a quarterly newsletter and up-to-date Burton and Friends events information. You’ll also benefit from a 10% discount from all purchases over £10 in the shop and Craft Gallery. More generally, it’s an opportunity to support the Gallery.

If you have time to spare, you will be encouraged to help at functions, social events, or be a steward during some exhibitions.

We welcome young and old, and people from near and afar, to become a Friend of The Burton.  Everyone is welcome to join and we would love to have you on board.

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How to join the Friends

Everyone is welcome to join the Friends! Simply complete a membership form (available to download below) and pay an annual subscription fee of £20.

On joining you will receive our Welcome Letter, with copies of our most recent bi-annual Newsletter. Throughout the year we will keep you informed of any news, upcoming events and exhibitions.

Please complete and return your form to:
Friends of the Burton at Bideford
c/o the Burton at Bideford
Kingsley Road
EX39 2QQ

Subscriptions can be paid by cash, standing order or by cheque.

Cash or cheques can be taken to the front desk at The Burton or posted to the address above.

If you are a UK taxpayer and tick Gift Aid on the membership form, this enables us to claim money back from the Government equal to the tax you would have paid.

PLEASE NOTE: Membership is renewable on 1 January each year

For information about GDPR and other policies of The Friends please email

Our Events

Annual Christmas Exhibition

Friends Christmas Show

Quiz Night

The Kingsley room to hire at The Burton Bideford

Summer Family Event

Friends of The Burton
Interior of the Burton Bideford
Friends of the Burton at the Xmas Open
Interior of the Burton at Bideford

Contact the Friends

Friends of the Burton at Bideford
c/o The Burton Art Gallery and Museum
Kingsley Road
Bideford EX39 2QQ
01237 471455

The Friends of The Burton Art Gallery and Museum are members of the British Association of Friends of Museums (BAfM)