A new festive shop has popped up in Hitchin town centre in time for Christmas.

Shop Small Pop Up officially opened on Thursday, November 9 and is packed with Christmas goodies including stocking fillers, ceramics, vintage clothing, candles, cakes, furniture and the very popular Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.

The enterprise is headed by Jemma Larkin, owner of the Furniture Parlour, and will be open for six weeks, until Sunday, December 17. 

Jemma said: “The shop opening was more than I could have wished for.  Hitchin certainly welcomed us with open arms! The feedback has been really positive with lots of shoppers commenting on how lovely it is to be able to find and support so many talented small businesses under one roof.

“I set up 'Shop Small Hitchin' markets as I wanted somewhere to show my own small business, The Furniture Parlour, and as many others as possible. My business is based around sustainability and saving furniture from landfill.

"I have a studio on Bury Mead Road where I paint, take commissions, run workshops and stock Annie Sloan paint.


"I now run the markets three times a year at Hitchin Town Hall, with the next one taking place on the November 25 & 26 where you will find over 90 small, creative businesses.

"Growing into a shop space felt like the perfect way to give some of these businesses some exposure over the festive period while filling an empty shop, hopefully benefiting the area and existing local businesses close by.”

Cllr Keith Hoskins, North Herts Council’s executive member for enterprise and arts, attended a preview evening on Wednesday, November 8, and said: "I am delighted to see such enthusiasm from artisans and businesses coming forward to set up in the Churchgate area of Hitchin.

"This is a brilliant initiative on so many levels, bringing more choice to Christmas shopping, reusing empty shops and supporting local businesses that are just setting up, or getting ready to expand.”

Cllr Ian Albert, North Herts Council’s executive member for finance and IT, and chair of Hitchin area forum, said: "It’s great news that Hitchin has its own festive pop-up shop. Now's the time to get out and do your Christmas shopping locally — and you won't be waiting for deliveries.

"As a council we welcome any new business into the town, and I hope that this shop encourages other vendors to take the next step and set up their own shop.”

Shop Small Pop Up is located at 37 Churchyard Walk in Hitchin. It is open from 10am until 4pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays, and from 10am until 5pm on Saturdays.