Following an informal meeting in September 1989 a Steering Committee was established for the formation of a member society of the National Association of Decorative & Fine Arts Societies  (NADFAS) in Sidmouth, and so Sidmouth Decorative & Fine Arts Society (aka SIDDFAS) was born.

By February 1990 260 members had signed-up and the Inaugural Meeting and first lecture were held on the 3rd October 1990 at the Manor Pavilion in Sidmouth.

In 2017 NADFAS was renamed to The Arts Society and following that, SIDDFAS voted to rename itself to The Arts Society Sidmouth. In 2018 the society became a CIO (Charitable Incorporated Organisation) and our constitution can be found here.

The Arts Society to which we are affiliated, comprises more than 90,000 members in over 340 independent societies world-wide. Its aims are to promote the enjoyment and appreciation of all the arts and to conserve our art heritage.

We have a membership of around 340 and a short waiting list. We keep in regular contact with those on the waiting list through a coffee morning and our twice yearly Newsletter. Our main, regular activity is the monthly lecture on the first Wednesday of each month at the Manor Pavilion, Sidmouth, to enjoy a wide range of illustrated lectures by acredited Arts Society speakers. In addition, we have two study days each programme year and we arrange day and extended visits to places of historical and artistic interest.

We are busily involved in various educational and cultural projects in the local community. All members are invited to attend our social activities and to join in the fun of trips and tours to locations of artistic interest. New members are very welcome. You can find full details of all these activities in other parts of our website.

Listed below is a brief summary of our data protection policy:

Members' details will be processed fairly and lawfully and in accordance with the Society's legitimate activities. Members' details will be disclosed to The Arts Society for the purposes of mailing the quarterly magazine 'The Arts Society Review'. Members' details may be disclosed to The Arts Society Area or to other Member Societies.