A HUGE painting of The Last Supper, which will hang in St George's Church, Nailsworth, has recently been completed.

The 12 ft by three-and-a-half ft canvas was painted by Lorna May Wadsworth, a young portrait and landscape artist, who has previously painted portraits for Tony Blair, David Blunckett and Margaret Thatcher.

Ms Wadsworth, who learned at The Prince's Drawing School which was founded by the Prince of Wales, will exhibit the painting at St Martin-in-the Fields Church in Trafalgar Square, London from Monday, March 1 to Sunday, April 4 next year.

After that it will be transported to Nailsworth where it will be unveiled at a special ceremony around Easter time.

The painting was commissioned by the Parochial Church Council for Nailsworth to hang behind the altar in St George's Church in September last year.

It was the request of the late Alan Denman, an ex-church warden who died in January last year aged 86. He left £5,000 to the church and the painting was part of a bequest.

He moved to Nailsworth in1959 with his wife Tina, having previously been a navigator in the RAF during the Second World War.

Mr Denman, who lived in Orchard Mead, was well-known in the town as he used to be chief public health inspector and surveyor, and volunteered help to the Women's Institute when his wife was the chairman and after she died.

Ms Wadsworth used real-life models to recreate the last supper.

The Rev Stephen Earley, vicar of Nailsworth and the surrounding villages, told the SNJ that he has already had great compliments about the painting by Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Right Rev Michael Perham, Bishop of Gloucester.

The Rev Canon Mark Bailey, vicar of Trinity Church in Cheltenham, has also commented on the painting.

"I have rarely seen a painting that I have found so moving, so powerful, so quickly," he said.

Mr Earley said: "The painting is stunning – it will look amazing in St George's and will really catch the eye.

"It is tremendous for the church and for Nailsworth. I am convinced that people will come from far afield to see it."

Look out for further updates about the painting in the SNJ.

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