About The Test Valley Arts Foundation

Creativity, innovation, inspiration, joy, emotion, insight, revelation, engagement and expression. When you see some of these words used in connection with a book; the fragment of some music that goes round and round in your head; a movie that moves you; a young person’s first dance performance and a piece of art which you could never afford to buy but the poster is up in your room — they seem natural and part of life. Yet when two words – “The Arts” – are used together they generate a range of responses, not all of them polite!

As a nation our arts and cultural life is now central to what defines the United Kingdom, generating huge amounts of cash into our economic life. Ask any tourist and you will hear about our wonderful museums and galleries, Jane Austen, Shakespeare, our pop music etc. – the list is endless. Yet when we talk about either the public or private support for the arts (in all its forms) one almost has to apologise when asking for money. But –

Putting money into the arts and the cultural life of all our communities is an investment powerful enough to change lives!

That’s why TVAF is a grant giving charity dedicated to the arts in Test Valley.

We have already made a difference, and under the leadership of Yinnon Ezra we have been reflecting on our achievements and making plans for the future.



We recognise that Test Valley comprises diverse and often disconnected communities. We also acknowledge that the role of local authorities is changing and that public funding for the arts generally has declined in recent years. Nonetheless, the Test Valley benefits from improved arts  facilities  (notably in the form of Chapel Arts and The Lights) and a number of energetic champions of the arts, as well as a strong community of artists. Test Valley Borough Council, a key partner, retains an Arts Officer and there is a general openness to new ideas within the area.

These circumstances create opportunities for TVAF to use its resources to good effect by acting as a creative catalyst and enabler.


Our mission is to inspire creative development in the Test Valley

  • by attracting national recognition for the arts in the area
  • by generating opportunities for community participation, especially among young people
  • by working in partnership to extend our reach and increase our impact.
TVAF strategy 2021/22