One of the great things about writing for Leeds Living is the many and varied places and events I get to cover. A lot of them are pop-ups or launches, so it was refreshing to be directed towards The Craft Centre, which is celebrating its 35th Birthday this year. In its early days there were usually craftspeople working on the premises. Today the space is full of artisan pottery, glass, jewellery and prints, along with items which do not fall into any specific category. The producers are no longer here permanently but supply items from their own studios and are spotlighted during Maker Days when they attend the centre to meet the public to explain their processes as well as answer questions.
The Craft Centre is a not for profit organisation which exists to promote the talent of British artisans which it does brilliantly, both through permanent features and temporary exhibitions which last for three months. The great thing about it though is that everything on show is for sale, which I suppose you could say just makes it a shop but that would be like saying that The Fat Duck is just a cafe. If you want your money to stay local then the items which have been made in Yorkshire have a white rose next to them.
What struck me most about The Craft Centre was the knowledge and commitment of the staff. I spoke to Jane, the Manager, and Gwyn who is Educational Co-ordinator. Their passion for the job and enthusiasm for the future makes me certain that some lucky writer will be covering the 70th Anniversary, I have checked my diary and I am unfortunately not likely to be available myself but I hope that whoever does do it has as positive an impression of The Craft Centre as I did. I am sure that they will.
The Craft Centre is situated under the main entrance to the newly refurbished Leeds Art Gallery, next door to Visit Leeds. For details of events please go to their website craftcentreleeds.co.uk or why not just call on spec. They are open Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Stan writes Let’s Do Lunch for Leeds Living. He also reviews special events for food and drink, which sometimes takes him beyond Leeds. He has also developed an interest in writing on culture, most frequently dramatic and musical theatre.