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Kilncraft: Discover the peaceful art of pottery painting

Helen Morton is the proud owner of Kilncraft, a quirky little shop nestled in Wadebridge high-street where you can paint a pot whilst tucking into waffles and ice-cream or coffee and cake!


Wadebridge locals may remember it being a hardware shop for many years before its fabulous new makeover! So, what prompted the change? Helen told Wadebridge Life that she wanted to do something that had ‘a bit more meaning to it’ and to create something that offered people more of an experience.


She said: “One day I was walking along a beach, and I saw loads of washed-up tennis balls and I thought, ‘Why am I selling these if they’re just ending up here?’”


So she took the steps to create a business that was more in line with her own ethics.


After 16 years of running hardware shops, Helen finally followed her dreams and created the Kilncraft that we can all enjoy today! From this space, Helen provides workshops, such as ‘potters wheel lessons with Astrid’, plus takeaway pottery kits, ‘bring a bottle evenings’ and kid’s parties.


Not only does Kilncraft offer a fun experience for friends or a messy afternoon with the kids, it also is a great place for community groups, with local not-for-profit clubs being offered accessible rates to enjoy the space and activities.


The shop is used by groups such as the memory café, the WI and Brownies, Guides and Rainbows, to name a few. Helen also supports community fundraising events by offering heavily discounted rates to schools which enable them to sell them on and raise money for important enrichment opportunities for the children. Local families may have noticed the beautiful rainbows provided by Kilncraft that were painted by St Breock School for their rainbow run!


Helen’s daughter, Ella, has also been making beautiful clay sunflowers for customers that raise funds for Ukraine with each purchase. In their last sunflower campaign, they raised £612. This summer they have continued to raise over £100 and they hope to have raised another £100 by the time this edition reaches your door!


For future community projects Helen has set up a CIC (not for profit) company to run alongside Kilncraft.


An overwhelming observation that Helen has made since running Kilncraft as a commercial enterprise is that ‘affluent families’ are the only ones with access: “Our main aim for the CIC is to give the opportunity to everyone. Everyone should have the opportunity to be creative, to touch clay and to paint.”


As well as her special offers to schools, Helen has taken further steps to make the pottery painting more accessible to local children by offering an after school club, where for £10 children can get as creative as possible - with some ice cream thrown in too!


The hope of Kilncraft becoming a CIC, is that it will ensure Helen’s community outreach plans are more sustainable and enable her to reach more groups and offer more to the community. Pottery painting can be a therapeutic activity; it is very mindful, which can benefit mental health, and Helen is interested in inviting more regular groups of all ages to benefit from the positive, peaceful qualities pottery painting has to offer in our fast-paced world.


Helen has made sure that for Halloween she is stocked up with lots of pottery pumpkins of all sizes for some spooky autumn fun and over the next few months Kilncraft will be offering discounts on the Christmas baubles to help you get ahead for the festive season!


So, if we have a wet and wonderful autumn, remember you can have a hot chocolate, stay cosy and paint a pumpkin to scare away the winter blues at Kilncraft!


You can find Kilncraft at 15 Molesworth Street. Visit https://www.kilncraft.org/ for more information.

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