What's on at PPUG during February…

Anxious & Awesome!

Opening to coincide with Time to Talk day, Kerry Weston has curated Anxious & Awesome (above), an exhibition encouraging people to speak up about mental health. Pop in on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays during February between 10.30am and 3.30pm.


Notable Newport

Join us to learn about notable residents of Newport. Help us choose which ones should be part of our new street art project to transform Cockram's Yard.

Thursday 27th February 2pm–3pm at PPUG.


About PPUG

Independent Arts (IA) have transformed an empty shop on Newport High Street, creating a vibrant art gallery and a wellbeing hub for art-based projects that can benefit your mental and physical health.

OPEN: 10.30am – 3.30pm Thursday, Friday and Saturdays

The People’s Pop-Up Gallery, known as PPUG, opened in April 2019 at 33 High Street, Newport, Isle of Wight. It showcases art created in Independent Arts' wellbeing workshops as well as featuring art by local schools and organisations. If you are interested in exhibiting at PPUG, please contact us.

Social Prescribing

Changing lives through art is very much the impetus behind IA. Established in 1987, the charity now leads the way on the Island for arts-based social prescribing. Social prescribing is simply where people receive non-medical help to improve their health and well-being through activities delivered in a social setting. These activities have measurable outcomes and vary from participating in a singing workshop to improve respiratory health, enjoying a dance class to assist with neurological conditions, to joining an anxiety café to reduce feelings of anxiety and isolation. At PPUG you will be able to find out about workshops, classes and groups designed to help improve mental and physical wellbeing.

Most of the artwork due to be exhibited at PPUG has been produced either at therapeutic workshops run by Independent Arts, or in environments designed to give artistic opportunities to people and children of all backgrounds.

“Independent Arts will always be a charity delivering arts programmes for the benefit of the most vulnerable people on the Isle of Wight; people of all ages experiencing disadvantage or social isolation, those with long term health problems and elderly people in care homes,” says Wendy Varley, Chair of Trustees, Independent Arts.

The result is a rich body of work ranging from poignant black and white photographic portraiture to ceramic sculptures to intricate textile panels that feature the heritage of Newport. The opening exhibition, Time & Tide, features extraordinary artistic responses to local history created primarily by residents of Southern Housing Group schemes and care homes across the Island and at other workshop events held at libraries.

“We are delighted that The Gravesend and District Real Estate Company have given us the opportunity to use this space and would especially like to thank Tony Scotcher from Scotcher & Co for making this possible,” says Kate Ball, Chief Executive of IA.

PPUG will be open Thurs–Sat 10.30am–3.30pm though times may vary. If you are interested in volunteer opportunities or would like to find out more, please contact us.

PPUG Launch


PPUG: Art & Identity display


Anxiety Café PPUG panel

Singing for Breathing PPUG panel

DanceMakers PPUG panel

PPUG is located at 33 High Street, Newport, Isle of Wight PO30 1SR


PPUG needs you

We are looking for volunteers to help us curate and hang exhibitions and talk about the work displayed during gallery opening hours. If this sounds like you, then please

contact us


February 2020

Anxious & Awesome! Opening to coincide with Time to Talk day, Kerry Weston has curated Anxious & Awesome, an exhibition encouraging people to speak up about mental health. Pop in on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays during February between 10.30am and 3.30pm.


January 2020

Terrific textiles. This exhibition features a range of textile-based artwork created by people attending Independent Arts' workshops across a range of projects, including School Ties, Creative Café, PortFolio, Workshops for Wellbeing and Time & Tide.


November 2019

Newport Daytime Anxiety Café are celebrating a year of photography with their new exhibition “Through Anxious Eyes” which opens at PPUG on 14th November. This also marks the launch of our Anxiety Café Toolkit, for people looking to set up an Anxiety Café in their area.



October 2019

Celebrating Age showcased the remarkable artwork produced by residents of care homes at creative workshops run by Independent Arts on the Isle of Wight.

Celebrating Age exhibition at PPUG, October 2019

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August 2019

Our 'Mindful & Soulful' exhibition featured artwork from participants of our mental wellbeing pilot project. PortFolio.

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July 2019

PPUG's July exhibition featured stunning artwork from Nine Acres Primary School.

PPUG Nine Acres Primary exhibition July 2019

Be creARTive is artwork produced by the children from Nine Acres Primary School over the course of one year. Exploring themes from early cave paintings, tribal art, propaganda posters, modern art, self-portraits, even the school’s chickens, they have produced a body of work that is outstanding and demonstrates the potential art has to unlock creative expression…

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June 2019

Reconnections highlighted the power art has reconnecting people to their environment and sense of self. A powerful mixed media show, the result of 15 weeks of workshops, featuring photography, sculpture and painting by residents of Newport Residential Care.


PPUG June 2019 exhibition

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May 2019

Our launch exhibition featured work from our Time & Tide project, and photographic workshops.


Creative Cafe PPUG panel

SingAbout PPUG panel

About social prescribing

The core principles of social prescribing are that it:

  • is a holistic approach focussing on individual need
  • promotes health and wellbeing and reduces health inequalities in a community setting using non-clinical methods
  • addresses barriers to engagement
  • enables people to play an active part in their care
  • utilises and builds on the local community assets in developing and delivering the service or activity
  • aims to increase people’s control over their health and lives

There is a growing body of evidence that social prescribing reduces pressure on the NHS by directing people to more appropriate services and groups. An evidence summary published by the University of Westminster suggests that where an individual has support through social prescribing, their GP consultations reduce by an average of 28% and A&E attendances by 24%.

Source: Gov.uk