How much is that doggie……..

[Allison Herbert with one of those shop window doggies]

Was chatting to Allison Herbert last night at a ‘do’ held in the Bath Aqua Glass Studio in Walcot Street.

Allison is Chief Executive of the Bath BID (Business Improvement District) the people who support and promote local businesses through everything from cleaning streets to hanging baskets of REAL summer flowers.

She was keen to show me the latest way the organisation is going to encourage people to look in the city’s shop windows.

Bath Bid has created a brand new “How much is that Doggie in the Window” trail which launches tomorrow – Saturday, 1st July.

This fun competition will be hosted in shop windows throughout the city centre. The public is invited to follow the trail and find all 25 hand-felted dogs hidden in the shop windows. Competition entrants will have to say which dog breed is featured in which shop window.

With 25 little dogs to find, it may take a few visits or a satisfying walk through the city, but entrants have until 31st August to submit their forms.

The winning entries will be collected, and a random entry from all the completed correct forms will win a Bath Gift Card worth £100, which can be spent in almost 200 different shops in the city centre. Entrants will also be invited to place a bid for their favourite felted dogs.

The winning bids for each dog will be collected, and all the money will go to Bath Cats and Dogs Home at the end of the summer. And of course the felt doggies will be dispatched to their new homes.

Laura Taylor, Community and Corporate Partnerships Fundraiser at Bath Cats and Dogs Home, said: “We are so grateful to Bath BID for supporting us with their new Dog Trail activity as part of their Summer Sundays’ event programme. Bath businesses have always been fantastic supporters of Bath Cats and Dogs Home, and we look forward to continuing to work with many of them over the year ahead. The funds raised by the Dog Trail will go directly to rescuing, rehabilitating, and rehoming our vulnerable rescue cats and dogs at the Home.”

The dogs were all created by hand from wool by artist Laura Pettit.

Last night’s event, by the way, was to celebrate the launch of the 4th edition of the Indie Bath magazine. It’s a twice yearly publication which showcases the wide range of Bath’s independent businesses.

Indie Bath was originally created to make it easier for people to discover and support the city’s independent businesses, and features a business directory, the latest news from indie businesses, easy ways to support small, fascinating facts about some of Bath’s world-leading businesses, and much more.

Bath BID has had brilliant feedback from the public for the first three editions – even meeting one American visitor to the city who said she had visited every single business in the guide. 

Dylan Delil Murat – Creative Director of Dylans Moda Barbers Ltd – one of the independent businesses featured in the magazine.

This summer’s edition features a local illustration created by celebrated artist Tin Stanton.

The publication is available to pick up from independent businesses around the city centre from next week. Indie Bath can also be viewed on the Welcome to Bath website.

Adrian giving a running commentary.

Last night’s event featured a demonstration of glass blowing with a running commentary from Sales Director Adrian Dolan.

The Walcot Street Studio actually makes the glass products – which you can watch and book to have a go at glass blowing yourselves. It has lots of ornaments and gifts for sale and a front of house cafe and even a glass museum.

It even has a stained glass window by the Victorian architect and designer William Burgess. One of his most notable works was Cardiff Castle where a similar piece to this one now resides.

The window was found in the basement of Abbey Chambers – which used to house the tourist information centre – back in 2009.

After it was restored by the studio’s stained glass team it was taken on the BBC Antiques Roadshow. There are very few known windows in this style in existence today, making this a rare and precious artifact.

It’s believed the window was originally commissioned by Mallot and Co – a jewellers located in Milsom Street in the 1800s. It was made by a company called Saunders who worked with William Burgess.

Its jewel-like coloured panels are believed to represent the gemstones ruby, sapphire, diamond, amethyst, garnet and emerald. Very fitting for a jewellery store window!

The Aqua Glass Studio repairs and restores stained glass.