Ted Stourton’s ‘Light Box’: an unwelcome hard sell


The message is clear: stop trying to pressure guests into buying your awful paintings, Ted.

Scientologist (and Camelot Castle Hotel’s ‘artist-in-residence’) Ted Stourton routinely takes guests to the basement of the hotel to see the incessantly-hyped ‘Light Box’ attraction. Apparently, this consists of a box with some lights in it that he uses to..ah, shine a light through some of his paintings.¬† According to John Mappin and Ted Stourton, this attraction is nothing short of a miracle. Judging by their hype, it’s literally magical.

To most unsuspecting guests and visitors, it’s little more than a hard-sell of some awful paintings.

Here, Ted and John, is a quick selection of what your paying guests think of your ‘Light Box’ (and these all came from 2* reviews):

“On our second night, we went to visit the Light Box as we were intrigued about it (You are told about it on arrival), It is pleasant but if you give in to pressure easily please do not go. Lets just say my husband came away with a larger painting than he had originally intended to buy.”

“I left his dungeon, sorry, studios, very confused and aplogetic to my partner (the latter was laughing). Ted … then took us to see the “lightbox”. I think we were doing okay til then. He still seemed interested in us. In answer to the question posted all around the hotel. “Yes! We have seen the lightbox”…3 halogen bulbs shining onto one of Ted’s pictures. The most beautiful thing in Cornwall? Have I mentioned megalomania?

We lost his interest then, My partner was more interested in whether they were halogen bulbs or another kind. I asked what medium he had used in his paintings: oil, watercolour or emulsion (emulsion, by the way) We were only shown 2 pictures (of a series of at least 10) before being escorted out without a goodbye…We found out later, from fellow guests, that we were supposed to buy a picture of his.”

“The camp resident ‘artist’ and his lightbox? Yes, we saw it, we really did and what can I say? A bit of MDF, some old black velvet, a torch and a dimmer switch”

“Art work displayed everywhere in the Hotel by live- in artist Ted, my 8 yr old grand daughter could do better then they try to get you to buy it when you visit the light box!”

“Don’t be taken in by the fact that he reduces the prices when you don’t seem interested it appears he does this to everyone.”

“Do not ask to see the light box,its simply a hard sell for his paintings”

“Don’t be fooled by the “LightBox” it is just a marketing ploy for the loopy resident artist to lure you into his art studios to sell you a rather hidious painting”

“The light box is nothing more than a gimic to get you to buy Ted’s art”

“Fortunately we did not meet the owners and therefore were not exposed to …pressure to buy one of the perfectly dreadful pictures which seemed to cover every square foot of wall in the hotel… nor indeed did we see the infamous ‘light box'”

‘The Light Box’ or whatever it was called, either way it had us all worried, we dare not go and witness it’s ‘powers’ for fear of being initiated into some crazy cult”

“But the owners are just plain weird. One is an artist who slinks about the place inviting vulnerable guests to go see his light box so that he can entice them into buying one of his childish paintings. The other seems to spend his time trying to recruit people into his religious group”

What do you think makes John Mappin and Ted Stourton continue to ignore this feedback?

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