At the age of 86, local artist Fred Ward is still making "fine art".

That is what his art-lover friends call it, and it is the title of Fred's new exhibition at Harrow Museum.

Bryan Thomas, of Harrow Museum, said: "He has always been in love with sketching and painting and it has obviously paid off. He is such a good artist and so diverse in his subjects."

Fred's work mostly comprises of landscapes and still life, but he has worked in pastels, oils and watercolours, and has even ventured into sculpture.

After seeing a Salvador Dali exhibition, Fred told the chairman of Harrow Art Society, Norma Stephenson, that he had just realised he was a surrealist.

"Man drowning" is a surrealist piece, and according to Bryan, is his most 'extreme' work.

It shows a skeleton man coming out of a sea, surrounded by figures representing what the man was in life - a drinker, a smoker, a gambler and a womaniser.

Bryan, who owns two of Fred's works, said: "It is excellent."

The first is of an old country cottage on a hill and the second is of swans on a lake, and Bryan often "loses himself " in their calm.

Fred loves seeing and reading about art as much as he loves creating it. His friends recall him making good use of his bus pass to be the first to see the new exhibitions at the big galleries in London.

Norma said: "It was only later in life he came across books about art. That was a revelation to him. He knows the answer to anything on the subject. He is a very intelligent man."

Yet friends speak of Fred as being quiet and modest.

Local artist Cheryl Gould taught Fred still life in the '80s. As she recalls, she used to say to him: "Fred, you have all this work. When will you have an exhibition?" and he would say "Oh, I'm not good enough."

She remembers him in class throwing himself into his painting with gusto. She says: "He enjoyed doing his art enormously. He's a lovely chap."

Fred was born in 1922 in Fulham and moved to Harrow in 1967. He now lives in Wealdstone, and is mainly housebound after a bad fall. But he managed to visit his exhibition and the museum staff said he seemed pleased.

Fred has been an active member of Harrow Museum for many years.

Lottie Collins from the museum said: "Fred was one of the first volunteers to help run the museum, look after the shop and welcome visitors to the site right from the beginning, in 1986.

"The Friends of the Museum are very pleased to have this exhibit to thank Fred."

Fred has been active in the community in other ways as well. He has been a member of the Harrow Arts Society for as long as he has been involved with the museum.

He has attended demonstrations and lectures there, and used to enjoy sitting in the afternoon workshops drawing what he saw, even as his eyes began to trouble him.

Fred's exhibition, Fine Art, is on display at a temporary exhibition in the Tithe Barn of Harrow Museum, Pinner View, Harrow, until Sunday March 1. Entry is free.

This is Fred's second exhibition at the museum, and it has already been well received. Bryan Thomas said: "I've got a feeling he will sell a good few pieces."