It's been quite a year as many of you can imagine moving premises was bad enough but on top of that we have had to deal with Brexit and issues locally in the city centre there certainly hasn't been a dull moment. I was never good at throwing or catching as a child but I'm certainly good at juggling now.
Firstly I want to thank each and everyone of you, without your support throughout the last year and beyond (some of you have been with me 7 years now) we wouldn't be here, it's as simple as that. I have never seen trading conditions as tough as what they have been this year. The uncertainty around Brexit has nearly killed the shop but somehow we have managed to keep going. To the Government please sort it out as a country and as a business we cannot carry on like this.
On a plus side we finally moved into our dream premises and our now permanent home. To the people that came down and helped pack everything up, move it and set everything up again in the new shop we couldn't have done it without you. We were determined to stay in the city centre and not be like the thousands of businesses that have moved out of town, although that would have been the easier option by far. We have renovated a derelict building and brought it back into use, it also meant we were able to install disabled access to all parts of the shop. Again we are standing out setting an example to other businesses, in this day and age there is no reason NOT to have disabled access. But do you know what the best reward ever is seeing people's faces light up when they realize not only can they access the shop but we have loads of room inside for them to move around as well.
I knew when we moved we were moving to a rougher part of town but never in my wildest dreams did I imagine just how bad it would be. I never imagined I would become a bouncer for one nor that my customers would be scared to leave the shop. Come on Wakefield Council and Wakefield Bid get it sorted out once and for all. People shouldn't be scared to walk around our city and I shouldn't be scared to work alone.
I've just been doing some totting up and we have taught nearly 50 workshops this year many of which have been in the new shop. That's well over hundred people that have been and learnt a new skill with us. We've also welcomed two new people to our tutor team Sarah from Adors is our needle felting guru and Penny from the Knitting Genie is teaching a wide range of subjects from Spinning to Gansey knitting. Hopefully there will be two more people joining the tutor team next year so we can expand the workshops we offer to include more crafts.
The Odd Balls Knitting group has continued to grow and we have welcomed loads of new people to the group this year. Some of you have very much become part of our woolly family and it been great watching you pass your skills on to others. We have received a very exciting invitation for next year that involves passing our skills on but I will tell you more on that one after Christmas.
What always amazes me is how as a group of knitters we open our arms and welcome new people in. Especially on days like Yarn Shop Day and when Winwick Mum was with us. You regulars do me proud when someone new walks in and your immediately finding them a seat and a cuppa. Our knitting community is a huge part of the shop and it wouldn't be the same with you.
All said and done it's been a very eventful year. Hopefully next year will be filled with yarn, friendship, craft and a lot less problems.
Here's to 2020 let's hope it's a good one!