New “pop up” shop opened by Lord Mayor in Coney Street

A new pop-up shop was opened today  in York, occupying one of the empty premises in Coney Street.

The pop-up, which was officially opened by The Rt Hon Lord Mayor of York, Cllr Keith Orrell, is the latest expansion from Fabrication Crafts Ltd, a social enterprise originally based in Leeds that aims to provide skilled craft people with a place to sell their work.

The store will sell locally made products created by talented crafts people from both York and Leeds. Items will include clothing, home ware, furniture and food, as well as the option to order bespoke items.

Established in 2008, Fabrication works with a number of community organisations including Yorkshire Federated Housing’s Passion4Fashion project. The pop-up shop on Coney Street will remain open throughout the festive season until February.

The shop is being run in partnership with the National Trust, in an attempt to tackle empty properties across the country owned by the body, which may struggle to find tenants due to their listed statuses.

This particular Grade II listed Coney Street building was originally built in the 1600s before being remodelled in the 20th century.
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Bid to bring empty Coney Street shop back into use. Lord Mayor of York opens local “pop-up” shop on Friday

Coney Street, York

The pop-up, which will be officially opened by The Rt Hon Lord Mayor of York, Cllr Keith Orrell, is the latest expansion from Fabrication Crafts Ltd, a social enterprise originally based in Leeds that aims to provide skilled craft people with a place to sell their work.

The store will sell locally made products created by talented crafts people from both York and Leeds. Items will include clothing, home ware, furniture and food, as well as the option to order bespoke items.

Established in 2008, Fabrication works with a number of community organisations including Yorkshire Federated Housing’s Passion4Fashion project. The pop-up shop on Coney Street will remain open throughout the festive season until February.

The shop is being run in partnership with the National Trust, in an attempt to tackle empty properties across the country owned by the body, which may struggle to find tenants due to their listed statuses.

This particular Grade II listed Coney Street building was originally built in the 1600s before being remodelled in the 20th century.

David Morgan, General Manager for the National Trust in York, said: “This building is one of the oldest in York and formed part of the estate of Frank Green, who gave Treasurer’s House to the National Trust.

Cllr Keith Orrell

“All rental income from our commercial properties helps to support the beautiful York gardens and houses in our care and we are really pleased to see the building come to life once more with a community focused brand such as Fabrication.”

The Rt Hon Lord Mayor of York, Cllr Keith Orrell, said: “It’s great to be able to open this new venture for Fabrication, especially in the heart of York.

“It is very important that we support local business and continue to work in partnership with the National Trust, who have helped us preserve this historic estate.”

Decision on “Make it York” future

The Council must decide whether to renew a three year contract with Make it York (MIY) at a meeting taking place later this week.

The organisation is a curious hybrid with responsibility for a disparate range of functions including business development, tourism, culture and the Shambles market.

For residents, its City centre activities are likely to have the highest profile.  Many initiatives there, including the Christmas lights and anti-litter patrols, are the brainchild of the, trade funded, “York BID”

MIY has been criticised for its opaque decision-making processes.  As a “wholly owned Council company” it should be subject to regular review by a “stakeholder” committee and at least two of the Council’s scrutiny committees (which are themselves famously obtuse).

In realty the “stakeholder committee” rarely meets, while the Council’s two representatives on the MIY board have a largely subterranean profile.

Success has been limited, with a confusing array of bodies (LEP North Yorkshire, LEP City Region, York BID etc.) rubbing shoulders in the same field.

Coney Street decline

MIY can take some credit in helping to sustain the number of tourists coming to the City. This is an important part of the economy and visitor numbers have increased, partly on the back of a weak pound.

Employment levels in the City also remain high

The biggest criticism of the Council’s approach is a lack of smart PIs on which to judge the organisations success.

Very noticeably, there are no customer satisfaction measures in the current set, other than those for participating businesses.

MIY receives an annual £300,000 subsidy from taxpayers.