Art with an empty shop in Altrincham

Empty shopArt With A Heart have opened an arts centre for people in Altrincham, using what was, for more than 2 years, an empty shop.

The Art With A Heart shop in the town’s Market Quarter  brings art to a wider audience with its friendly and informal approach – and a two week exhibition turnaround keeps interest high. Art With A Heart have attracted more than 4,000 visitors since they opened the shop at the end of September, with one show attracting more than 1500 in only 10 days.

The shop is used by local artists and by other groups.

It supports emerging creatives, such as Jack Henriques and Justin Garner, who have used the shop to hold their first exhibition in a public space.

Other local groups and societies are able to run events in the shop. These have so far included South Trafford Archaeological Group, Altrincham Society of Artists and the Altrincham Video Club.

Schools and students also benefit from the shop. Not only are they getting art out of the school corridors and into a public exhibition space, with the Trafford Schools Open, but Art With A Heart also offer mentoring, skills development and experience to student volunteers.

Art With A Heart hope to continue this, and allow schools to run and manage exhibitions in the shop.

Local charities have also used the shop. It has hosted fundraising exhibitions like the Manchester and Beyond for The Christie, and the Around the World in 80 Artists exhibition in aid of the Children’s Adventure Farm Trust which raised £8,000.

Karen Wroe, Project Director of Art With A Heart, is currently working on securing sponsorship and grants to fund the shop space as an arts centre, and hopes to move from a temporary let to a 12 month lease.

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3 responses to “Art with an empty shop in Altrincham

  1. Reblogged this on thesememorieswhich and commented:
    A heart warming story. In Tunbridge Wells town centre we have several empty shops, as well as the derelict cinema site. However it has just come to light that a planning application has been put in on behalf of chain-restaurant Nando’s, to build a new premises tucked into a carpark on one of the ‘Industrial’ estate retail parks. It may be a ‘brown field’ site, but I’m not sure it’s the best one.

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