Old forge is “dream come true” for artist

DESIGNER glass is on offer at a new gallery which opened in Worthing last week.

The Forge Gallery boasts a unique collection of art including silver, jewellery, ceramics and paintings.

W38048H13-ForgeGallery''Opening of The Forge Gallery, Worthing.  Pictured are  gallery owners, Siobhan Jones and Danny Spiers.

W38048H13-ForgeGallery''Opening of The Forge Gallery, Worthing. Pictured are gallery owners, Siobhan Jones and Danny Spiers.

Owner Siobhan Jones says she fell in love with the building that sits next to the The Swan public house, as soon as she saw it.

The 39-year-old moved from Basingstoke to Shoreham with her partner Danny Spiers, and their three boys, last year.

She said: “It took me over a year to find a workshop so there is definitely a gap in the market in Worthing. I need quite a big space for the kiln so the beach huts were out of the question for me.

“I had looked everywhere, at industrial sites and old factories but nothing was quite right.

“We were looking for a shop in the town centre, then this came up.

“It has not been used as a forge for the best part of ten years, so we have brought it back to life.

“We fell in love with the place as soon as we saw it, this is more than we could have asked for, it is an absolute gem so it really was a wow moment.

“It is really exciting. When the vinyl went up on the windows I was over the moon. We have worked really hard and now it is paying off.

“Ultimately this has come about because I needed a workshop and the rest has developed from there.

“But I think it is good for Worthing and we are made up to be in the forge because it is so special.”

Ms Jones, who formerly ran glass workshops in Hertfordshire and Hampshire, is a graduate of Farnham University of the Creative Arts.

Her new venture is set over three areas and spans two floors.

She said: “This hidden gem of a building will not only help me grow and develop my business, but it will also give other bespoke artists the opportunity to display their work in a unique environment, unlike any other in the area.

“I have been on the circuit for 16 years so have used all my networking contacts to get this place up and running.

“We have got the work of some of Britain’s finest artists here, it is a great selection.

“I have only chosen work that I like and that makes me react positively. That way it is easier to sell.

“We want people to come in and have a look around. This is a place for buying something a bit special, such as for a birthday, anniversary or wedding.

“We do not sell prints here they are all originals, similarly all the ceramics are hand built.”

The gallery will be officially opened by Worthing Mayor Bob Smytherman on Friday October 18, which will be followed by an open weekend.

It will also offer training workshops for people wishing to learn more about working with glass.

For more information go to www.theforgeworthing.co.uk.