Unusually having leave together, my wife and I caught the service 61 bus to Blackpool town centre and dropped in on The Hive creative Christmas fair on the 25th November 2022. The market sadly only ran for two days but the artists, crafters and makers showcased are mostly available online so there’s still time to fill stockings with unique goods from locals this year.


Roots Plant Life: house plants and art

There was a good variety of stalls and all the work and products were of the highest possible quality. I drooled over Roots Plant Life’s collection, restraining myself as we’re a bit out of plant space. My wife bought an excellent picture from their stall as a Christmas gift for her sister, however.


We both marvelled at the variety of art work including photography, on offer: oh to be that accomplished! There was quite a variety of styles. I might have bought a piece for my mother, but she’s not sorted the last I gave her, so that’s for another year.

In addition to the traders, the convivial Hive Arts collective company was on hand and the upstairs gallery area provided rather a good venue and back drop to the stalls and their generally bright products for sale. Access was through the side door, preventing any people jams in the cafe. The cafe had a products stall in the show, all looking very tempting.

Lazy Daisy Wax Melts

After we’d had a good look round and some chats, it was very convenient to retire downstairs for a snack and drink, before stocking up on some fruit and veg from the shop.


Iasthai Original by Nina Rambelli – artisan silver and gold jewellery

While trying to get my own art pieces together for this fair and the associated Guggenhive show downstairs in the cafe, I’d run into some embarrassment about frames. To try and sort this for the future, we repaired to The Regent emporium where I swiftly found three reasonable frames for ยฃ16 that I can use in the future. Now to buy the beveled aperture masks.

Roy Rajan – photography and original artwork

On the way back to the town centre, I dropped into the Chequers gallery there, to pick up my now framed contribution to the Grundy Art Gallery open exhibition. It looks ok, even though I do say so myself.



Dawn Mander photography, artworks, cards and books

With the hourly bus back nearly an hour away, we had time to nip into Upside Down cafe where we were encouraged to try some delightful Taiwanese black tea. Once more I was drooling over the plants for sale; I came out with one the last time I was at Upside Down. My wife was watching the bus time and we were bang on to get it back home, happily laden with our purchases. A very pleasant afternoon.


Reclaim Blackpool - Mapping Sexual Harrasment
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    I have worked in the housing and transport professions for several local authorities, specialising in policy, strategy preparation and bid writing. Having always had an interest in film, the visual arts in general, theatre, music and lterature, I thought it would be good to combine the writing experience with these interests to contribute to altBlackpool. In addition to writing, my hobbies include watercolour and pastel painting, photography, woodwork, cycling and vegetable gardening.

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