The secret history of camouflage in Leamington

Alice Swatton of Leamington Art Gallery and Museum, district councillor Kristie Naimo, Pip Burley of Leamington LAMP, Leamington businesswoman Sarah Windrum and Barry Franklin of Leamington History Group outside the Old Art Gallery in Leamington.
Alice Swatton of Leamington Art Gallery and Museum, district councillor Kristie Naimo, Pip Burley of Leamington LAMP, Leamington businesswoman Sarah Windrum and Barry Franklin of Leamington History Group outside the Old Art Gallery in Leamington.

A new festival that is taking inspiration from an exhibition in Leamington about the history of military camouflage in the town is launching this year.

And the residents, artists and businesses who are together organising the Leamington Camouflage Festival are asking people to get involved.

Leamington Art Gallery and Museum will commemorate the work of artists and scientists who were based in the town during the Second World War through an exhibition entitled The Art of Deception.

The display will look at the history of the Ministry of Home Security of Camouflage’s time in Leamington, where it worked in secret on naval and land-based camouflage between 1939 and 1944. The ministry’s headquarters was at the Regent Hotel - now Travelodge, while work was also carried out at the Old Art Gallery in Avenue Road and a roller skating rink known as ‘The Rink’, now the Loft Theatre.

The festival will take place at various venues in Leamington between July and October. Any organisations or individuals that would like to host or deliver an event around the theme of camouflage are invited to get in touch.

One of the organisers, Warwick district councillor Kristie Naimo, said: “This is a hidden story of Leamington’s past that will be celebrated. We hope this series of events will bring the history of camouflage to a new audience.”

To submit an idea, email info@leamington-camo.co.uk

All events will be listed online at www.leamington-camo.co.uk