The new High Sheriff of Cumbria, Christopher Holmes, was the guest of honour at a Arts Society Cumbria celebration event.

The society has moved to a new venue, the Braithwaite Institute.

The group attracts members from all corners of North Cumbria and is hoping its new location along the A66, near Keswick, will enhance visitor accessibility.

Speaking on the occasion, the chair of the Society, Joyce Berry said: "We are delighted to welcome the High Sheriff of Cumbria in our new home at the Braithwaite Institute.

"By joining us here, the High Sheriff recognises that voluntary societies like ours make Cumbria a better place."

High Sheriff, Christopher Holmes, reciprocated with well wishes for the Society, highlighting his commitment to work with local charities and the role of arts in raising youth aspirations.

He said: "The arts are massively important in that regard."

News and Star: High Sheriff Chris Holmes at the Arts Society CumbriaHigh Sheriff Chris Holmes at the Arts Society Cumbria (Image: Supplied)

The event also hosted art historian Dr David A. Cross, who delivered an illustrated speech about the Cumbrian-born 18th-century artist, George Romney.

Author of Romney's biography 'A Striking Likeness', Dr Cross detailed the humble beginnings of Romney in Dalton-in-Furness to rival artists like Joshua Reynolds and Thomas Gainsborough, as one of the time's most influential portrait artists.

His artworks today are recognised worldwide and reside in museum collections.

After a celebration lunch the society held its AGM, seeing Linda Ivison elected to serve as the new chair of the society.

Before retirement, Linda worked as hotel and hospitality manager in the North of England.

Originally from Edinburgh, she has lived in Cumbria for more than 45 years.

She said: “My goals for the society are to continue to offer a diverse and engaging programme of lectures and visits to a larger audience."