This quirky shop is 'in danger of dying' - but you can help keep it alive
Co-owner Sarah Parker in Across The Continents which is at risk of closing down
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 9 Nov 2017
A desperate Hull trader has warned customers her "dying" city centre gift shop could be forced to shut for good after an alarming drop in takings.
Across The Continents in Prospect Street is home to 15 independent businesses who sell handcrafted giftware and unique quirky items.
However, nearly every trader inside the store is "suffering", according to Denise Harrison, 52, who co-owns the premises with Sarah Parker and runs her own business selling wooden and metal gifts made in Bali.
"It's devastating," she said. "This should be our busiest time of the year just before Christmas but it just isn't and we've got traders saying they will leave in January.
"We don't want people to know we are struggling but at the same time if we don't let people know we could be gone.
"People just don't seem to be shopping in the city centre and it's dreadful."
Denise Harrison and Sarah Parker after the shop was broken into earlier this year
Across The Continents, which was broken into in July earlier this year, was opened in May 2016 after the closure of nearby Eden.
However, Ms Harrison said her venture, which is called Sansara, is only taking two thirds of what it was 18 months ago.
"Our lease is up in July and at the moment it's doubtful whether we will stay open beyond that," she said.
"We'd like to think that business will pick up and we will still be here next year but we just don't know.
Across The Continents in Prospect Street (Image: Jerome Ellerby)
"To not have a shop based in Hull anymore would be devastating because that is what we as traders always wanted.
"We wanted a city centre premises and for trade to remain on the high street.
"It's soul destroying for my own business but if we don't have the footfall we can't sell to anybody."
Ms Harrison said shoppers are not venturing past the library down Prospect Street which has contributed to a lack of people browsing the store.
On one day before lunchtime during the middle of the week, the whole of the premises comprising 15 businesses took a total of just £50 - a figure which shocked Ms Harrison.
The store sells a range of handcrafted and quirky items
Now, the resolute entrepreneur is calling on the people of Hull to come into the store in a last ditch attempt to save it from closure.
Ms Harrison, whose Fair Trade goods help poor families in Bali, said: “Come in and see what we have got.
“Please check us out if you are looking for something a little bit different.
“Come to us and help a small Hull business as well as five families in the third world.
“As independent businesses we will be able to go back to doing smaller table top events and going online but Across The Continents could cease to exist.”