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Blackbird 1992, watercolour, by Mary Fedden (born 1915). The painting, priced at pounds 550 and coloured black, red, blue and cream, will be part of a fund-raising art exhibition in aid of St John Ambulance which is nearing the end of a two-year appeal to raise pounds 5m.

The exhibition, which runs from Wednesday 18 to Wednesday 25 November at the Portland Gallery, Bury Street, London SW1, will feature paintings and sculptures donated by 40 artists, including George Devlin, Sir Hugh Casson, Christine McArthur, Helen Lessore, John Pawle, Peter Freeth, Lucy Willis, Hugh Buchanan, Rose Hilton and John Cunningham. The paintings are priced from pounds 250 and all the proceeds from sales will be given to the charity.

Mary Fedden studied art at the Slade School of Art from 1932 to 1936, became a member of the London Group in 1956 and was Chair of the Women's International Art Club until 1959. She taught painting at the Royal College of Art for six years, has had many solo exhibitions and executed a number of murals, one of which she painted in 1980 with her husband, Julian Trevelyan, for Charing Cross Hospital.

St John Ambulance, in its present form, was founded in 1877 to instruct people in First Aid, nursing and hygiene - the original Order of St John was founded nearly 1,000 years ago to care for pilgrims visiting Jerusalem. The organisation now has 4,300 local divisions with about 80,000 volunteers, who last year cared for 300,000 people at various sporting and musical events held throughout the country. The organisation started its national appeal in order to help its local divisions with their fund-raising - each division is responsible for paying for uniforms, equipment and ambulances, which can cost pounds 30,000. Everything raised centrally will be redistributed to the grass roots.

For further information, contact: St John Ambulance, 1 Grosvenor Crescent, London SW1X 7EF, telephone 071-235 5231.

On Saturday 28 November, the Appeals section will be devoted entirely to publishing charities' Christmas Fairs and Bazaars taking place on or after the publication date. Please send brief details, including a general description of items for sale, the charity involved, opening/closing times, sale address and a telephone number for further information, to: Gazette (Appeals), The Independent, 40 City Road, London EC1Y 2DB (fax 071-956 9358). Please include a daytime telephone number.

Joanna Gibbon

The Independent welcomes details of appeals from readers. They should be sent in writing (no more than 100 words) to Gazette (Appeals), The Independent, 40 City Road, London EC1Y 2DB. Please include a daytime telephone number.

SAVE Britain's Heritage is holding an exhibition, Enchanted Gardens, from Tuesday 10 to 17 November, at the Richmond Gallery, Cork Street, London W1, to raise money for its campaign to protect historic gardens in Britain. SAVE is concerned that many historic gardens, laid out in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries and seen as an extension of the architecture of the house, have no statutory protection and will disappear through neglect or destruction. All the paintings - depicting secret or well-known gardens, some decayed, others recently restored - were commissioned for the exhibition and are by 30 artists, including Alexander Creswell, Howard Morgan, Alan Powers and Kathleen Williams. Prices start at pounds 100.

SAVE Britain's Heritage, 68 Battersea High Street, London SW11 3HX, telephone 071-228 3336.

The Ocean Drop-In Centre, a coffee shop and advice centre in the centre of Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, is open during the day, and one night a week, to welcome anyone who is lonely, penniless or disoriented. Started in September, the centre attracts many between the ages 18 and 28, often unemployed, living in bed-and- breakfast hotels with their young children and with nowhere to go during the day. The centre offers careers advice and support from a part-time social worker: advice on employment, welfare rights and drug abuse is given. Snooker and table tennis and television are also provided. The Ocean, which so far has been lent its premises - an old restaurant - needs to raise money to ensure its future.

The Ocean, 13 Regent Grove, Leamington Spa CV32 4NN, telephone 0926 312093.

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