I love seeing communities in action and was delighted when I saw a post last month advertising the Cluanín Community Co-Op Shop. I went along to find out more about it and find out how people can get involved. The shop is located in the Leitrim Sculpture Centre on Main Street, Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim, and is open every Thursday – Saturday from 11am – 4pm.
Two local artists, Anna McLeod and Christine Mackey founded the Co-Op Shop and the ethos is ‘Produce Produced locally’. I chatted to Cróna Gallagher, who is a printmaker and writer, and one of the committee members and also a volunteer. Cróna was telling me about the history of the shop and also about some of the artists and craftspeople who sell their items there.
I originally thought that is was only for people based in Leitrim, but it’s for anyone in the area or the surrounding counties. I also met Sadbhbh Browne, who is looking after administration for the project and is in the process of setting up social media accounts, which I’ll add when they are up and running.
The concept is a community project run entirely by volunteers. Just 10% commission is taken from each item sold.
It’s not just a shop either, Cróna was telling me it’s becoming a real community hub, with local people coming in for a browse and a chat, and people sharing their stories of Manorhamilton from days gone by.
At the moment there’s a wonderful selection of arts, crafts, books, stationary, jewellery, homewares and soft furnishings, but the group are also open to stocking home baked goods, eggs, etc. I love the idea that not only are you supporting local people but also that you will find something unique and special. Below is the list of producers so far, if you’d like to add to the group you can register your interest by emailing CluaininCommunityCoop@gmail.com
- RoCró Design – (Greeting Cards)
- Kasia Macudzinska – (Basketry)
- Caroline Rock – (Sculpture)
- Susan O’Hara – (Jewellery)
- Carol McGowan – (Hand Felting)
- Kevin Willis – (Wood Carvings)
- Catherine McGagh – (Greeting Cards/Paintings)
- Róisín Campbell – (Lathe Work/Knitwear/Crochet/Jewellry/Acrylic Paintings)
- Yosef Dvores – (Photo Montage Print)
- Soraya Ricalde (Jewellry)
- Marta Olborska (Photography)
- Neil Delaney – (Print Illustration/Watercolours)
- Bairbre Kennedy – (Ceramics)
- Clare McManus – (Soft Furnishings)
- Marieke Bell – (Macramé/Soft Furnishings)
- Iris H – (Laser printed Monotype Print/Greeting Cards/Homewares)
- Jane Weir – (Framed Hand-Crafted giftware/Homewares/Jewellry)
- Niamh O’Brien – (Upcycled Homewares)
- Sylvia Hoffman (Crochet)
- Dominic Sharp – (Ceramics)
- Rebecca Sweeney – (Handspun Weaving)
- John Byrne (Screen Print and Montage)
- Marie Evans – (Celtic Tree Whispers Cards)
- Q – (Sculpture)
- Christine Mackey – (Phyto-Print/Charcoal/Line Drawings)
- Maria Bagnoli – (Lino Print)
- Mary T. Keown – (Oil Painting)
- Gavin O’Donoghue – (Acrylic Painting)
- Eimhin Farrell – (Acrylic Painting)
- Rachel Matthews – (Acrylic Painting)
- Nadine Bardlow – (Sculpture)
- Sheena Malone – (Charcoal)
- Trudy Wilson (Oil Painting)
- Rossa Ó Snodaigh – (Leabhair Ghaeilge/Irish Language Books)
Best of luck to everyone involved in this wonderful project, it’s really heartwarming to see.