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Join the friends of The Higgins BedfordJoining The Friends of The Higgins Bedford

The Friends organisation plays an important part in the life of the art gallery and museum, and individual members enjoy an excellent range of benefits; joining the Friends will put you at the heart of The Higgins Bedford.


How The Friends support The Higgins Bedford:


  • By contributing funds to support the work of The Higgins Bedford
  • By fostering general interest in The Higgins Bedford
  • By providing volunteers


Membership Rates and How To Join

  • £25 annual individual membership
  • £40 annual joint membership
  • £10 annual student membership


To become a member of the Friends, please complete and return the application form, and either fill out the standing order form, or send us your cheque.

The subscription year runs from 1st September.


You can download the latest membership application form here.

Download the latest Friends newsletter here.

Download the latest Friends programme of events here.


Lectures 2018 - 2019

Meetings start promptly at 7.30pm at The Higgins Bedford. Places are limited so please arrive promptly.

Tickets - Friends £4, Guests £9


Tuesday 18th September 2018

Hugh Belsey – Gainsborough at The Higgins Bedford

Thomas Gainsborough’s supremely skilful landscapes and sensitive portraiture have

earned him a special place in British affections. The Higgins Bedford is lucky to own a

number of works by Gainsborough and these will be the focus of a talk by Hugh Belsey, former curator of Gainsborough’s House in Sudbury.


Tuesday 19th October 2018

Richard Galley - Bedford’s Highlanders

During three days in August 1914, nearly seventeen thousand Scottish territorial

soldiers arrived in Bedford – a friendly invasion that was the subject of an exhibition

at The Higgins Bedford in 2014. The impact of this mass billeting will be discussed by

Richard Galley, an expert on the Scottish Highland Division’s time in Bedford.


Tuesday 30th October 2018

Ruth Broomhall - The Cambridge Seven

In the mid 1880s, in one of the grand gestures of the 19th century missionary

movement, seven young British men left their universities to devote their lives to

spreading the word of God in China. Among the group were two members of

Bedford’s Polhill family, and the celebrated England cricketer, C T Studd. National

acclaim and the interest of Queen Victoria sent them on their way; Ruth Broomhall

explains what became of them.


Tuesday 6th November 2018

Jovan Nicholson - Winifred Nicholson and the Liberation of Colour

Winifred Nicholson (1893-1981) wanted, she said, ‘to paint pictures that can call down

colours, so that a picture can be a lamp in one’s room, not merely a window’.

Nicholson was profoundly interested in how prismatic colour transforms objects and

their settings. The art historian, Jovan Nicholson, who is Winifred Nicholson’s

grandson, explores this strand of her work.


Tuesday 27th November 2018

Emma Mason - The Work of Robert Tavener (1920-2004)

Robert Tavener’s own list of his favoured subject matter tells us much about the

artist – ‘English Countryside and English Architecture. Shape, pattern, colour, texture,

design… the underlying relationship with the past, of our landscape and building’.

Emma Mason, who is a dealer in modern prints, will tell us about Robert Tavener.