LLANTARNAM Grange Arts Centre celebrated its 50th anniversary on the weekend with the launch of four new exhibitions.

The main exhibition in the central gallery From Adams to Zobole is an A to Z of more than 40 pieces.

Torfaen MP Nick Thomas-Symonds had the honour of opening the celebrations, echoing when the art centre was originally opened in 1966 by former Pontypool MP Leo Abse.

Mr Thomas-Symonds MP, said: “It was a real privilege, I quoted John Updike in my speech who said that art offers a ‘certain breathing room for the spirit’.

"Those words capture what this wonderful Cwmbran facility offer.”

Another three exhibitions opened on Saturday including a series of Welsh countryside-themed paintings by local artist Jantien Powell in the Oriel Café Gallery and two showcases on craft ceramics and shape-setting jewellery.

Marketing officer Charles Fountain said: “We have four exhibitions showing some jaw-dropping contemporary artists. Our main exhibition features some of the finest art in Wales.

“It includes Earnest Zobole, William Brown as well as Billy and Becky Adams. It is a mix of some of the best artists we have had but we are also looking to the future.”

All four exhibitions will run at Llantarnam Grange until May 14.

Councillor Stephen Brooks, added: “The skill by the people and the hours put in to produce such colourful art is overwhelming. "The art centre is known as far as Japan and Australia and this show is some of the best we have seen.

“Whether people are visiting from Cwmbran or across Great Britain, we have had and do have some very good exhibitions.”