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Ipswich crafty crafters raise hundreds for hospice

PUBLISHED: 12:00 18 March 2019 | UPDATED: 12:00 18 March 2019

From left, crafter Christine Old, Hospice Campaign Manager Norman Lloyd; Sailmakers Shopping Centre Manager Mike Sorhaindo; Hospice Assistant Campaign Manager Joanne Beattie, and crafter Ida Thomas. Picture: SIMON LEE

From left, crafter Christine Old, Hospice Campaign Manager Norman Lloyd; Sailmakers Shopping Centre Manager Mike Sorhaindo; Hospice Assistant Campaign Manager Joanne Beattie, and crafter Ida Thomas. Picture: SIMON LEE

Simon Lee Photography

The Crafty Collective Ipswich raised hundreds of pounds to help provide palliative care at St Elizabeth Hospice during their christmas market, ahead of this year's Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk.

The Christmas Market Village, held at Sailmakers Shopping Centre in Ipswich, ran over two weekends during the run up to Christmas last year.

Town’s busy shoppers filled their stockings with their handcrafted Christmas decorations and gifts, including jewellery, glassworks, African and Indian inspired clothing and paintings.

The group of charitable crafters formed as a team of 12 independent businesses in 2018 and has since expanded to more than 50 members, becoming the Home of Suffolk Arts and Crafts - with its website launching later this year.

Founding member Sue Laurence, a former pschyiatric nurse who makes glass and wooden crafts, said: “We really enjoyed teaming up with Sailmakers Shopping Centre to help raise funds for such a wonderful cause in St Elizabeth Hospice.

“Stallholders who took part in the Christmas Market Village were more than happy to donate and it felt good to help make a difference.

“The Christmas Market was a big success and we thoroughly enjoyed working with Mike and his staff at Sailmakers Shopping Centre.

“The idea is for us to keep traditional crafts going and to not let them die. We have modern and fashionable items as well.

“We started out as a group of 12 and have recently expanded to a networking group of 53 members. And there is still people asking to join us so there is a need for it.”

The shopping centre will be joining more than 30 other businesses in the town to take part in Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk to raise money for the hospice.

Sailmaker’s own Elmer “Ladyphant”, by artist Deven Bhurke, will be unveiled in the shopping centre later this year.

Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk campaign manager, Norman Lloyd said: “It is great to see sponsors such as Sailmakers going the extra mile and we especially appreciate the generous input from the Crafty Collective.

“This year we are aiming to better the total of £200,000 raised through Pigs Gone Wild, and extra fundraising like this can make all the difference.”

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