Opening of studio after £50,000 grant

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A new arts studio in Alford, made possible thanks to a five-figure Lottery grant, has been officially opened.

In March, Alford Craft Market Centre was awarded £50,000 to convert the Old Bakehouse, which sits next door to it in West Street, into a pottery and glass studio.

The centre received the grant through the People’s Project, a competition run between the Big Lottery Fund and ITV. Viewers of ITV Calendar chose the centre as one of three projects from a shortlist of five for this area to receive Lottery money for community projects.

On Saturday, the Bakehouse was officially opened by Audrey Tuplin, who baked pies in the building when it was used by the butchers Thornalleys.

Lynne Le Voi, secretary for Alford Craft Market, said: “It was a lovely day, with lots of visitors who all enjoyed the glass blowing demonstrations by Merlyn Farwell. The children who came also had a great time making clay monsters with Fiona Radford, who is going to be doing some Saturday morning kids’ classes in the near future.”

Lynne gave thanks to all who helped on the day and explained the opening of the Bakehouse means the centre can now offer classes in pottery, glass fusing and glass bead making, with plans for glass blowing, woodwork and willow weaving in the future.

“We are so grateful to the Big Lottery’s People’s Project and the people who voted for us in the Lottery competition, without which this would never have been possible,” she added.