The owner of a Wallingford business that has served both residents in the town and those from afar for over 40 years has made the “difficult decision” to close its doors.

Village Fabrics, based in St Leonard's Square, is set to close in Wallingford next year. 

The town centre business will shut in February 2024 as it progresses to its next chapter, which involves an online expansion and the opening of a new studio near Redditch, according to the most recent newsletter.

Owner Yvonne McAtamney said: “Although I am moving forward it is with much regret and sadness as unfortunately I will have to leave friends and customers behind.

"We have many fond memories and friends within the area but there are practical concerns about the building which needs a lot of love and attention.

“It’s now in the process of being sold. Travel time has been a somewhat unfortunate necessity and I have now reached a significant birthday, so it was time to look at moving forward.”

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Although, the business has been in Wallingford since the 1980s, Ms McAtamney took over in January 2002, having always frequented the shop for fabrics and supplies as an avid quilter at its former homes in Goldsmith’s Lane and the Rockfort Industrial Estate.

With a background in business management and a passion for quilting from a very young age, Ms McAtamney seized the opportunity to take the business on and make a living from her favourite hobby.

For over 20 years, she has continued the destination shop, providing essential supplies to patchwork and quilting lovers near and far and allowing the venue to act as a social hub for classes and groups that meet fortnightly and monthly.

In the business’s newest format, Ms McAtamney intends to put more focus on the website, online shop and run a new range of digital classes to help quilters from all over the world – all supported by a heavy social media presence.

The new studio (based at Stockwood Business Park in Inkberrow) will also have a workshop and shop floor area, open to the public on certain days and for special events.

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Ms McAtamney said: “The business will still be very live and active, just in a very different form.

"We are extremely sad that we are leaving behind many loyal customers who have been coming to Village Fabrics longer than I have owned it. I have a great team of staff here too who sadly won’t be coming as it’s moving too far away.

“Village Fabrics is more than just a shop – it’s a lifeline social service for so many groups that have been meeting here for more than 20 years that I know Wallingford will very much miss.”