On 5th December, 9 local crafters will be opening a pop up shop in Bude (Belle Vue, next to Wroe’s, the old Alchemist shop) to sell their wonderful unique wares. Here, you will find skincare, jewellery, mosaics, felt flowers, driftwood, crochet cards, teddy bears, shell items, clocks, Christmas wreaths, and on it goes…..
A co-operative of local crafters, the Pop Up Bude idea was born out of craft fayres and has been co-ordinated by Janine Everett and Lulu Ball.
Pop Up shops became well known courtesy of Mary Portas, and are generally seen as a great way to rejuvenate the high street – more than 11% of shops across the UK are said to be empty premises.
And so far, there has been nothing but positive feedback about the idea.
The crafters concerned feel that Pop Up Bude could become a generic name, used by other community pop up shops in future, which might be an answer to Bude’s empty shop problem..
However, one argument is that it is the level of business rates which is putting shopkeepers off setting up permanent premises. Landlords who know their shops will remain empty tend to welcome pop up shops as a way to help cover their ongoing costs.
On the plus side, Lulu explained how she felt the £1 parking in Bude from 16th December will also really help the local shops – thanks Cornwall Council – plus the free parking after 4pm on late night shopping evening.
Lulu and Janine explained their rationale: “Really this benefits everyone; there is no downside. Visitors are more attracted by vibrant shop window displays, the Belle Vue location is excellent, and we have a big window with plenty of space, plus there is on street parking. Belle Vue is Bude’s premier shopping road with natural footfall. Lots of people enjoy craft fairs but they tend to be tucked out of the way, so this will be a way to appeal to the everyday shopper, enabling them to shop local, and to buy things which are not mass produced. Many of the items can be personalised or commissioned”.
Each trader will have a table of around 6ft x 4ft to display their wares but there will also be shelving to create a more retail feel. Nadelik might also be described as a pop up shop but it is slightly outside the town centre at Bude Bike Hire, Pethericks Mills. Local artist, Sue Read, also tried a very successful pop up art gallery earlier this year, down at the pitch and putt.
The Op Up Bude shop will be open on Thursday through to Sat throughout December, from 10am – 5pm. It is hoped that some of the crafters might make or finish items on the premises to provide an element of theatre and performance for the customers, but it is definitely worth a visit for your Christmas shopping. Check out their website, facebook page and twitter for more info (see poster).