For 50 years the Springwood Community Arts Centre has been sharing the love of art and community.
The centre opened in the Boys and Girls Club – the former Roxy Cinema premises in Macquarie Road Springwood - following the Lower Mountains fires of 1968, offering an outlet for residents traumatised by the fires.
"It gives the community a place to get together with something positive to do," said committee member Catherine Fox.
Offering a variety of art classes for amateur artists, practising artists and beginner artists, the classes are provided at a minimal cost, at their current location in Ferguson Road in a council-owned building maintained by the centre.
While the offerings have changed over time, spinning and weaving and drawing classes have remained popular over the years.
There's camaraderie and co-operation and we forget about our other lives for 2.5 hours.Catherine Fox
The spinners and weavers' creations can be seen around the Blue Mountains, with many in the group taking to yarn bombing - Katoomba's main street is a popular choice.
The centre boasts 18 classes a week, and there are about 250 members. Some of the longtime members have been involved for more than 30 years, and a dedicated committee of volunteers ensures the centre continues to flourish.
"It's a real community. They follow each other's projects and share materials. They are always laughing and you can't stop them talking," Ms Fox said.
"Every class there's camaraderie and co-operation and we forget about our other lives for 2.5 hours of the lesson. It's very therapeutic."
The centre is online at www.springwoodarts.org or on Facebook. Enrolments for next term's classes will be taken on May 5.