A popular art shop and studio in Ryde is closing after 5 years, with owners Izi and Mike Evans deciding not to renew the lease.

The High Street People’s Gallery, which has exhibited and sold many local artistic talent, is holding a closing sale until the doors close for the last time on Saturday, February 29.

However, despite the loss of another store on the main street, local businessmen expect further investment in the city.

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Professional artist Izi said she and Mike have a new, time-consuming grandchild who no longer wanted a store engagement.

Izi says:

“I have to say the High Street isn’t good these days. We were happy, but we had to be quite inventive. We have provided a place for people who are looking for that special gift.

“But the cost of crossing the Solent by ferry or hovercraft deters tourists. In addition, there are too many charity shops in the city. We won’t have more visitors until Ryde becomes a suitable destination, with varied shops and facilities.

But all is not pessimistic according to Zoe Thompson, president of the Ryde Business Association. She said:

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“It’s always sad to see a business leave town, but it’s understandable that personal priorities change, which makes running your own business difficult. “

Zoe said she believes the city – recently selected for Heritage High Street Action Zone funding – has a bright future…

“This will translate to a minimum of £ 900,000 invested in High Street. We hosted a visit from a variety of other investors last week, who are interested in the city, and are looking for where funding opportunities can further enhance what Ryde has to offer.

Zoe offered this caveat:

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“As we know, retailers across the UK are facing very difficult times. The way people shop has changed over the past 10 years and it is important that businesses stay up to date and do everything possible to attract customers.

Ryde Business Association can offer support and advice on what can be done to help the stores stand out. For more information contact [email protected].


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