A MORPETH family business is opening its doors for the final time today.
Craft Studio has been providing a range of gifts in Newgate Street since 1965, but the Creighton family has decided to close the shop for a combination of reasons.
Husband and wife Stan and Evette had two stores before moving to the current location and son Keith, who helped out when he was growing up, fully came on board in the late 1970s.
From jewellery, paperweights, crystals and fine art to handbags, frames, Russian dolls and cuddly bears, there was something for everyone.
Keith said: “It will be a sad day when we close the shop, but we are looking forward to the future.
“Closing was a difficult decision but we have decided to make the break while we’re still ahead.
“The recession has meant people are not so willing to buy gifts throughout the year and the increase in business rates and rents has not helped.
“And I haven’t had a proper break for 15-20 years, so with me turning 60 next year I felt the time was right to stop.
“I have many happy memories of my time in the shop and I have become good friends many of our loyal customers over the years.
“I did do a few jobs after leaving school, including in the audio visual department and the science labs at KEVI, but then I started working at the shop full-time and I’ve really enjoyed it.
“My dad, who sadly passed away, was an artist and he did a number of paintings, portraits, copper etchings and woodwork, whilst my mum was the sales person who liked showing customers our gifts.
“We have received a lot of lovely comments from our customers who have wished us well in our retirement.
“In fact, quite a few of them have told us that they still have some Craft Studio items from the first few years we were open.”
Keith has a keen interest in the town’s history and he used to do postcards of old Morpeth as well as bring along personal memorabilia for people to view.
“I can now spend more time with the Morpeth museum efforts,” he added. “This shop used to be a meeting place for local historians and hopefully in the future we will find a venue to display the many interesting artefacts associated with Morpeth.”