Gallery Passes To The Next Generation
It’s an exciting new chapter for Longridge Gallery as the successful family business passes to the next generation, writes Sarah Varley. Photography: Kirsten Platt
Longridge Gallery was launched in 1985 and has built an enviable reputation for bringing highly collectable artwork from the country’s most respected artists to the region. Since October 2000 it has been owned by Alistair Sheret and now after 21 years, Alistair and wife Caroline have handed over the reins to Caroline’s son Nick Smith, supported by his fiancée Sophie Hart.
“Nick took over the business in June and began a really exciting time for the gallery. Since 1985, the gallery has only had two owners and has an enviable track record of providing a great service to the people of Lancashire,” says Alistair. “We’re delighted to see Nick and Sophie returning to their roots and building the business. It’s great to see two young professionals coming home to the Ribble Valley with all their enthusiasm and plans for both the gallery and life within the Longridge community.”
Former Preston Grasshopper Nick explained: “During lockdown I spent time learning the business from Alistair. We will be keeping the essence of the gallery the same, maintaining the excellent customer service, high quality art framing and showcasing outstanding artists. We are looking at different areas of the business on which we can build, such as utilising new technology and social media. We will have a lot of the same fantastic artists as before and we are also excited to be bringing in some new artists that we think our customers will love. We have just launched collections from Kimberley Harris, Ric Duffield and the Ribble Valley’s own Anthony Platt and we have more coming soon. Only this month the country’s best selling artist Doug Hyde launched a fantastic new collection of 7 signed limited edition prints and 2 sculptures. All the pieces are now exhibited in the gallery.”
“I’m really enjoying the variety of framing work we complete for our customers. In addition to family photographs, graduation certificates and children’s schoolwork, I’ve already framed a broken cymbal, a full size military flag, a collection of World War I postcards and all the artwork for Preston’s newest venue, Bar Pintxos. Working with customers to create the solution that’s perfect for the piece in question is a real joy. I’m excited for the months and years ahead and getting to know our customers and adding something special and unique to their homes and businesses,” concludes Nick.
78 Berry Lane, Longridge, Preston PR3 3WH