Rachel Hoath opened her fused glass shop just two weeks ago and has been overwhelmed by how popular it has become with locals and people visiting the town.
Her shop Rachel’s Glass Store has joined forces with two neighbouring shops on The Colonnade promenade.
They are Gallery Sussex, run by painter Julian Sutherland-Beatson, and Starlings-on-Sea, run by Charlotte Arundell, who sells hand-made women’s accessories.
Together they hope to make the area a hub for creative industries in the town.
Rachel, 59, says the feedback has been very good, and believes Bexhill Artists’ Quarter, as they hope it becomes known, will be a big draw for the seaside town.
“I’ve only been open just over two weeks and so far it’s been incredibly popular,” she said. “Julian’s been here about five months, and Charlotte’s been here 10 years. The reaction we’re getting is very, very good.
“We’re hoping it becomes a centre for artists. All the units down here are absolutely chock-a-block at the moment, so unfortunately there won’t be any other artists in here at present. But there are lots of other places in the town. And also with people coming to the De La Warr Pavilion, to the concerts and things, that seems to be attracting quite a lot of attention. Hopefully The Colonnade cafe is going to be opening later and things like that. We’re all working on it at the moment.”
Charlotte said: “I think it will be really good for the town because it’s a draw-down to the seafront, and there are so many other little quirky, independent shops in Bexhill that it kind of goes with the whole atmosphere of Bexhill anyway.”
Rachel makes one-off pieces from fused glass - including sculptural items on metal stands, and wall art for people to hang in their homes.
She runs fused glass workshops and exhibits her work, but this is her first shop.
“This opportunity came up on The Colonnade and it’s really getting a good lot of attention - and sales have been very good so far,” she added. “I think if we can get the artists’ quarter going that will be really brilliant. We want to promote ourselves, the three of us, as that.”