We have an important announcement to make. This will be the last Christmas for Radiance. We will be closing for good on the 13th of January 2019. As you can imagine, this decision has not been taken lightly - we have been VERY up and down, but our lease is up for renewal and another 5 years is too risky a commitment. It feels like things are coming to a natural end.
Hannah was on the brink of closing the shop in 2015 to focus on her own work when Ffion persuaded her to let her take over. Neither of us have regrets, it has been an absolutely wonderful thirteen years (we opened in 2005!), working with so many talented designers and makers, getting to know our lovely customers and staff and feeling like part of a strong, supportive community.
Things are changing. Times are hard. People are working more and more just to pay their bills, with little or none leftover. People are thinking more and consuming less (which is a very good thing). People prefer to go directly to the makers. With rent to pay every month, making things work as a retailer is more challenging than ever.
‘Hannah Nunn’ is very much a flourishing business, which has been separate from Radiance since the beginning. Hannah is still designing and making her own lamps, wallpaper, fabric and more in her studio in the heart of Hebden Bridge. She sells her work online and in shops all around the world. When Radiance closes you will be able to visit her studio by appointment, to see her collection. When Ffion first took over the running of Radiance, she had just finished her Software Engineering degree. Her web development and design business has been growing ever since and can now support her fully. So don’t worry about us!
During the winter months in this deep, dark valley, Radiance is at its brightest and busiest. People may assume that this bustling, tourist town would bring enough trade to support us through the rest of the year, but this is just not the case, and this summer in particular has been (for want of a gentler phrase) soul destroying. We speak to other brave faced, tired shopkeepers in town, giving it their all, who also go whole days without selling even a card.
While we’re here, we urge you to think about what you can do to keep Hebden Bridge (and everywhere else) full of thriving, independent shops. As we said before, it’s not easy when cash levels are low and uncertainty is high, but even if we can all buy one less mass produced, unethical, cheap item this year, walk around town instead of scrolling through Amazon and save up a little bit longer to buy something high quality, it will be wonderfully beneficial.
We will both hold our hands up and admit to having said that things were expensive, (out loud!) in small shops… maybe we can change the thinking here. Products that are made with good intentions, by healthy and happy people with quality, sustainably sourced materials are more costly, but they are not “expensive”. They are valuable expressions of spirit, not just made for the sake of it, or for massive profits and they are worth every penny.
We are so sad to share this news with you, but in some ways we are happy too and we would love to see you again before we close, in joy rather than sorrow. Together we can make it a wonderful last few months. We do have some new things and of course there will be reductions in January, all of which we will tell you about on Facebook and Instagram (or if you pop in!) as time goes on. To everybody who has supported us, from buying a birthday card to investing in a sculptural floor lamp, thank you. Without your support we wouldn’t have been able to bring to life and sustain this glowing business for all these years. Thank you so so so much.
Ffion and Hannah x
P.s. we will no longer be selling gift vouchers and we hope that the few that are still valid and out in the world can be happily redeemed before the 13th of Jan.