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Craft & Hobby Association Announces Formation of CHA-UK

The Craft & Hobby Association has announced the formation of an affiliate in the United Kingdom called CHA-UK. The new association will be independently funded and governed from its American affiliate, and will operate as a not-for-profit organization.

This isn’t CHA’s first international partnership. CHA already has a Canadian affiliate called the Canadian Craft & Hobby Association (CCHA), which also operates as an independent non-profit organization.

CHA-UK’s Board of Directors met in Manchester on May 18th to elect their first slate of officers. The Board consists of:

  • Colin Poole, Creative Expressions Ltd
  • Alastair McMinn, Coats Crafts
  • Barry Short, Creatively Inspired
  • Jane Gregory, Addicted 2 Craft
  • Tony Sheridan, Create & Craft TV
  • Catriona Marshall, Hobbycraft
  • Derek Bamford, Cutting Edge Craft, Grafton Projects Ltd
  • Mark Hill, The Thomas Kinkade Company LLC
  • Sara Davies, Crafter’s Companion Ltd
  • Stephanie Burnham, The Bead Scene
  • Anna Davenport, Immediate Media Co.
  • Carolyn Schulz, Creative Solutions Ltd
  • Terry Bowles, Design Objectives Ltd
  • Kathy Walsh, Personal Impressions
  • Stephanie Weightman, Art and Craft Direct Ltd
  • Andrej Suskavcevic, Craft & Hobby Association

Sara Davies and Mark Hill are also Board members of the Craft & Hobby Association, and Andrej Suskavcevic is the association’s CEO.

From that May 18th meeting, the CHA-UK Board of Directors elected the following officers to lead the new organization:

  • Chair: Sara Davies, Crafter’s Companion Ltd
  • Vice Chair: Carolyn Schulz, Creative Solutions Ltd
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Derek Bamford, Cutting Edge Craft, Grafton Projects Ltd

CHA-UK’s mission will be similar to its U.S. affiliate: to promote and grow the craft industry and provide support for craft businesses.

“The UK is at a crossroads”, explained Sara Davies, newly elected CHA-UK Board Chair. “We need to come together to collaborate in order to expand the craft industry in the UK by leveraging shared experience and pooling of resources to harness the collective power of an entire industry rather than individual craft businesses.”

One of CHA-UK’s first actions as an organization was to affiliate itself with BATF (British Allied Trades Federation), which will bring CHA-UK members a whole host of benefits, including access to discounts on credit card merchant processing rates, healthcare, mailing & shipping, healthcare, travel, insurance, and web design & hosting services.

CHA-UK membership starts at £100 per year for Buyer members and £200 per year for Supplier members, depending on a company’s annual revenues.

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8 Responses to Craft & Hobby Association Announces Formation of CHA-UK

  1. Jolanda Meurs June 1, 2012 at 4:31 am #

    That is great news. UK is nearby the Netherlands.
    Each year we go to Annaheim in LA. But this is maybe an options also…
    kind regards Jolanda Meurs/Netherlands
    DT member of Bo Bunny and Zva Creative.
    DT PaperandPictures (Scarpbookmagazine, Cards Only and Cards and much More Netherlands)

  2. Alison Drummond Jones June 1, 2012 at 9:37 am #

    This is brilliant news for the UK. For too long, craft businesses have been disparate and operating without an industry body. I hope that CHA UK spearheads the way forward for UK craft to raise the profile and the popularity of the separate streams which operate under it’s vast umbrella. I’d love to hear of new opportunities being created and creative businesses flourishing, rather than hear every week of yet another craft business closing down. I really like the fact that most of the board directors seem to be from the UK and understand the vagaries and specifics of this market, and not just as an offshoot of the US.

    I hope that CHA UK has a very long and successful future.

  3. Dogmatix June 1, 2012 at 2:32 pm #

    What great news. This will hopefully mean that the craft industry will flourish and there will be plenty of opportunities for all :)

  4. Michelle Hessler June 1, 2012 at 6:55 pm #

    Man…sure wish I could afford to head to their show floor when they get it organized and going! As the crafts in the UK are quite different then what we do here, and I’d love to see more of what’s trending there in a quicker fasion.

    Besides, I’d just like to travel there just for the thrill of going!!

    • Nancy Nally June 2, 2012 at 5:49 pm #

      CHA-UK has not indicated yet whether or not they plan to host a trade show…there are a lot of other things that they could do to promote the industry without hosting a show if they don’t want to undertake that project.

  5. Gab June 2, 2012 at 12:37 am #

    Very interesting. Nancy, do you know if there is a similar Association in Australia?

    • Nancy Nally June 2, 2012 at 5:50 pm #

      There is no CHA affiliate in Australia as far as I know…but there could be a local trade organization in that country.

  6. Nancy Nally June 4, 2012 at 11:55 am #

    I’d like to remind the commenter whose post I just deleted that personal attacks and anonymous comments are not allowed on this site. If you can’t attach your name and email address to it, please don’t post it here.

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