Heart Gallery News


Hello everyone!

These are really strange times right now for us all and it’s taken me well over a week to sit at the computer to think about writing this wee blog post! Being in business is always about adapting to change and coping with the unexpected which we have had our fair share of here in Hebden Bridge over our last 14 years! This current situation, however, is certainly something different entirely isn’t it?

danny abrahams oil painting
Danny Abraham's oil painting drenched in love for Valentines's day

It doesn’t seem that long ago that I was writing a blog about Storm Ciara and trying to recover from both that and Storm Dennis! We were just starting to see visitors returning to our beautiful town and to shop with us and the many other small independents who had managed to reopen. We had lost all Valentine’s Day sales at the beginning of February due to having to remain closed whilst the threat of flooding passed so we were really looking forward to Mother’s Day.

A stunning piece Liz Cooksey that was sold for Mother's Day

As we are considered a non essential shop we decided to close Heart Gallery before Mother’s Day to do our bit to prevent the spread of coronavirus locally and, although there is so much uncertainty, we now know this was the right thing to do. We don’t have a selling website so this will obviously impact on us but we have no intention of creating one. With all staff furloughed to hopefully protect their jobs and the future of Heart Gallery, and out of respect to the Post Office and Royal Mail Workers, again this is the right decision to take.

Some lucky mum's got these bunches of wooden flowers by Helen Gillespie

When I started Heart Gallery back in 2006, I always intended it to be a destination; a beautiful building showcasing beautiful handmade work by local and UK artists, designers and makers. It was hard work educating people about the joy of buying something that has been handmade and by doing so supporting not just us as a family run gallery but other small creative businesses. It was also extremely rewarding.

heart gallery hebden bridge
Over the years we’ve witnessed tears of joy, tears of sadness and marriage proposals. We’ve seen regular customers become friends. We’ve played a small part in people’s journeys when they’ve commissioned rings from us to celebrate togetherness and commitment. We’ve been included in puppy training offering a gravy bone here and there as a treat and a mop for little accidents! We’ve sent art work around the globe and been sent photographs of prints on people’s walls in homes in America, Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the UK. With our many jewellers we have created wedding collections and bespoke pieces not just for Brides but for Grooms, Mums and Bridesmaids too. It has been an incredibly varied journey that’s for sure.
jewellery at heart gallery
jewellery at heart gallery
jewellery at heart gallery

It’s clear that nobody could have predicted this part of our journey; something that appears to have started in Wuhan has impacted so many in such a bewildering way. I know I am not alone when I say I am bewildered. I know I am not alone when I say I am scared. I know I am not alone when I say I am struggling. Struggling to concentrate. Struggling to sleep. Struggling to adjust to a new ‘normal’ for now. However, I am also feeling blessed to be with my husband in our little rural home. Being at home has always brought me joy but now it’s expanding my heart even more and making me feel so grateful. Here I can rest, recover, nourish and plan for business recovery – because business will get better and we will survive, together. Ordinary stuff I have taken for granted at home feels to matter more now and even though things are extremely uncertain I know I don’t just want to survive I want to come out of this thriving.

So, I am telling myself I will take control (once I get out of my pyjamas!) and be more pro-active and plan, using this forced time wisely to strengthen Heart Gallery for the year ahead and beyond. I have been in touch with most of the artists/designers and makers currently showcasing with us at Heart Gallery and should have communicated with everyone by the end of the week. It’s really tough for them as they have to wait so much longer for the self-employed government package to kick in and it’s all still very vague. But together we can conquer corona and come out the other side!
Tree of Life
Things are changing daily but as the coronavirus situation unfolds and Government advise these changes we will update our social media feeds to keep you in the loop so please do keep in touch. These are the times when communities stick together, including the creative community, and we hear about all the wonderful positives out there. Let’s tag one another in social media posts, share each other’s good news and just be kind. Keep tuned in to this blog as myself, Mandy, Ness, Libby and Helen will be sharing more news on here a couple of times a week if we can. We have some lovely blog posts lined up to let you know what we have been doing with our time and these posts we hope will send out some positive messages to you all and send a collective message that we are all in this together but together we can pull through.
Keep looking for the silver linings my friends.
Alison Bartram, Heart Gallery, 01.04.2020

One thought on “Heart Gallery News

  1. Elaine Butler says:

    Hi there. So looking forward to coming into your beautiful gallery and purchasing a lovely print for our living room. Keeping positive will get us through this strangest of times.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *