As 2015 draws to an end we would like to thank you one and all who have shared our journey throughout the year. It’s been an interesting time for us, at the start of 2015 we were lucky to be approved to save a service much needed within our community – the Post Office. In February to be given three national awards from “the best of” made us smile a lot.
The plans to expand took us through June, a month of dust, paint and a new hole into Broad Street. At the start of July all the Post Office equipment started to arrive and the shop began to take shape. We opened the doors on Nick’s birthday, a day to look back on and say “we did it” we saved our Post Office. The official opening took place in September with our local Nick Thomas-Symonds MP and Lynne Neagle AM amongst the many dignitaries that came and supported us. A day that we won’t forget in a hurry as there were so many kind folk within our shop giving their support to our new venture. We also increased our staff numbers by employing Hayley who had been working in the Post Office in Blaenavon and Abersychan for many years.
Shortly afterwards we heard we had won another two awards from the Welsh Government Support your High Street campaign. This was the first time these awards were awarded. We were overall winner in the category of Community Service Provider and Highly Commended in Home, Garden and Leisure. This put the icing on the cake and showed that our ethos to work with our Community had started to be recognised.
This year we have had lots of fun doing interesting craftie birthday parties, photo shoots and working within the community doing craft days that have all contained smiles. We have had many craft demos that have given ideas to crafters and we look forward to continuing these in the New Year – watch this space for more details. We have stocked up on new lines and increased our stock holding, please don’t tell our accountant!
We have also added a printing and design service to our repertoire and have been privileged to supply and design the Christmas cards for Nick Thomas-Symonds MP and Giles Davies the Mayor of Torfaen which have gone out far and wide and supplied the Town Council with hymn sheets and leaflets.
We are proud to have continued our support and to raise awareness of Pancreatic Cancer UK and helped sponsor the Butterfly Ball of Promise at the Celtic Manor resort that to raised many thousands of pounds to towards finding a cure for this dreadful disease and will continue to do so in the coming years. In December we became the very first Dementia Friendly Post Office within South East Wales, and probably the first craft shop in the UK to have this status!
Our Social Media antics have increased and you’ll know about these if you follow our Mouse Artie on Twitter and Facebook. Our ethos to work hard and support our local community continues and we now look forward to 2016
May we wish you all a very happy New Year and hope all your dreams come true.
Nick Wendy and Artie.
Time is drawing to a close for the end of the month of November, a month of awareness of Pancreatic Cancer throughout the World , which at Artie Craftie we have supported. This is one of the many charities that we have supported since the opening of Artie Craftie last June in the World Heritage town of Blaenavon.
Every night during November our shop has been a blaze of purple this has been the second year of support but the first for us to keep our purple lights on every night during November ! The highlight of this month for us has to be the Purple Butterfly of Hope Ball at the Celtic Manor Hotel in Newport that helped raise awareness within Wales and further afield and some much needed funds for Pancreatic Cancer. Our purple Blorenge sheep, was bought by our local MPNick Thomas-Symonds, he vowed he would use him to promote Pancreatic Cancer through social media. Using images of his purple sheep which has now been named "Empurple", meaning to make or become more purple, in different locations, has certainly lived up to his promise!!
So over the last few weeks Empurple has travelled to London and back a few times and during this travels met some interesting folk and even got into places that we will never get into. Thanks to Nick's social media antics with Empurple he has help raised awareness of this horrible cancer that makes so many people all over the world lose love ones in a very short time.
We now look forward to continuing our support of Pancreatic Cancer and to help give far more awareness leading up to next November..
And finally the words by Alexander Wharton that hit the hearts of so many folk over this month of November
The Power of Purple
Purple is the colour of the poem that I read
Purple is the colour of the power to succeed
Purple for the purpose brings attention
If purple makes you wonder, then I'll wear it
Being hard for it to notice
Makes it harder for diagnosis
Education is the key
To keep the gems of our society
So help to raise Awareness,
This knowledge, it can change us
Purple Power is an answer
To beating Pancreatic Cancer
Nick and Wendy
This year Artie Craftie in Blaenavon will light up even more purple than last year and will stay that way every evening during November.
It' s a third of the way through the month of November and ever since Mandy Owen the previous Mayor of Torfaen asked us to light up our purple shop for Pancreatic Awareness Month in 2014 we have supported this important cause that has played a massive part in both our lives. Every day we are reminded by the box by our till that gets a donation for every carrier bag that our customers buy and the odd change that contributes to help Pancreatic Cancer UK.
On the 7th November we attended the Purple Butterfly of Hope Ball at the Celtic Manor Hotel in Newport organised by Linda Reardon, Mandy Jones and others to raise money for the awareness along with many others that support this cause. We were honoured to be asked to help support the event in which we sponsored the tickets that helped raise over £7,500 for Pancreatic Cancer UK this figure continues to grow and is far more than it was expected to raise to which it's hats off to all that have helped. During the evening we sat down to a lovely meal and enjoyed the music and laughter, there was a raffle and auction and we are very pleased to say that one of our purple Blorenge sheep raised £40.00 which our local MP Nick Thomas-Symonds' won and if you follow twitter you will see his antics @NickTorfaenMP in London at the House of Commons under the supervision of Nick.
Last year just three establishment supported the cause and raised some funds towards Pancreatic cancer UK within our town we now look around and see much more purple this year and this makes us happy and hope that even more money will be raised to help raise awareness of this evil disease and hopefully a cure.
There also seems to be a lot more purple awareness in social media but am disappointed that there is not more attention to this on the news. Now that could change on the World Pancreatic cancer awareness day on 13th November when I read there are many major sites around the world lighting up purple. For more details on how you can help then visit http://www.pancreaticcancer.org.uk/
Nick and Wendy