Thriving Stur: free school uniforms, artisans and a family festival


Pauline Batstone shares her monthly round up of what’s happening among the town’s collection of community enterprises and events

You never know what kind of glamour you can pull together in The Boutique

Introducing the Artists…
1855, Stur’s artisans bank continues to flourish: there are now more than 70 traders taking a space to show their craft or produce. Why not come and enjoy a food tasting on the first Saturday of the month, between 10am and 12 noon? For the time being 1855 will not be open on Sundays, and the monthly late night shopping Friday has been paused.

The art gallery above The Emporium

FREE school uniform
Both The Emporium and The Vale Pantry are working together to provide a free school uniform hub in the former Barclays Building to help children get ready to go back to school. Do you have any items that have been grown out of and are now lurking in a drawer? All donations gratefully received. And do come and see if there is anything which fits your children. Why buy new when you can recycle?
The Boutique always has free school uniforms alongside some great quality children’s clothes, most of which are just £2. It’s a great place for mums and grandmums to find a new outfit too: a constantly-changing range of lovely garments for the new season at knockdown prices!

Inside 1855 in Sturminster Newton, the town’s artisan bank with more than 70 traders

Sofa art
While you’re strolling through town, don’t forget to pop in and explore the Art Gallery in The Emporium – it’s an actual Tardis above the shop, and every room is filled with art.
Down the road at the old Barclays bank the Furniture Store is similarly bulging with fascinating items to transform your home, whether your sofa is actually on its last legs or you’re looking for an upcycling project.
We are always ready to receive donations – and always ready to welcome new volunteers into our team.

Family festival
SturAction, Sturminster Newton’s own Community Benefit Society, is one of the supporters of the Riverside Family Festival which is back this year on Saturday 19th August on the Riverside Meadows down by the bridge.
The Festival aims to give families a cheap, fun day out during the summer holidays while raising funds for local charities – this year The Vale Pantry, The Yellow Bus Community Project and Children’s Cancer UK wil all be benificiaries.
The group of parents running the festival would welcome some extra help on the day (and tidying up the day after!) – if you have a couple of hours to spare you would be very welcome. Please contact

Free parking on the first Saturday
There is always free parking – all day, both car parks – on the first Saturday of every month thanks to SturAction. By random chance cough it also happens to be the same day that the 200 or so car and bike enthusiasts have a friendly morning meet in the Rec.


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