After a long wait and more emails than I care to count, the real beginnings of our plans are finally within sight.
My goal has always been to work out opportunities which will benefit both myself and all the other people who share my aspirations. Doing the market is one avenue which gives us the opportunity to sell our handmade work, but having more permanent footing in the high street has always been my ultimate goal. Our 3 week trial run last year proved that an indoor art market is something which has the potential to work well in Chorlton, and I am so happy to say that our shop will rise again!
The location of the shop will, of course, be in Chorlton precinct – an area of the town which is, quite often, looked upon in a negative manner and one of my main goals has been to change this. For many years, I have felt that the development is not reaching its true potential, and with a little vision, it could become a much greater asset to the town. Currently the retail unit we will occupy has been empty for a number of months. A large vacant space in the centre of a town like Chorlton has a negative impact on the surrounding businesses, as well as having a demoralising effect on the community in general.
By the very nature of the type of shop we will be opening, it won’t be a big corporation who will be benefiting from it – it will be local people. Because of this, a much larger percentage of the profits will be going directly back into the local economy. One of the aims for the shop is to play a part in helping to encourage people to shop locally, not only at the market hub shop itself, but also the surrounding independent businesses. We will also be promoting other businesses which complement our theme e.g picture framers, art/craft supply shops. I believe that the only way for businesses to survive is to support one another and to promote the district as a whole and to work together to build networks to strengthen community cohesion and provide an opportunity for other local community ventures and small businesses to develop.
So, the next week will see us busier than ever as we get everything ready. Keep your eye out for our progress – more information coming soon.