Welcome to the Victor Batte-Lay Foundation

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The Victor Batte-Lay Foundation holds a varied and extensive art collection, which all together gives a powerful insight into East Anglian culture. The collection includes some well-known and prominent artists, such as Constable, Pissaro and Nash, as well as local artists such as Maggi Hambling.

Who was Victor Batte-Lay?

Formerly known as Clarence Victor Lay, Victor Batte-Lay was born in Colchester, Essex, in 1865 and went on to become a local dignitary. He was an avid collector of furniture and established the Victor Batte-Lay Trust. When he passed away his wife, Margaret Eleanore Batte-Lay, continued to take care of the collection for another 20 years before directing her trustees to provider a building in Colchester to house the unique collection. The organisation now has charitable status and is the Victor Batte-Lay Foundation.

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The Colchester Collection

The collection of artistic works is a celebration of Colchester’s creative past and is something every local resident and visitor can be proud of. There are very few collections in the world with a similar local focus, and this one is a cornerstone of our town’s heritage. Victor Batte-Lay grew up, went to school in Colchester and returned again in his adult life, making the Victor Batte-Lay Foundation collection a valuable treasure in our county’s crown.

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