Owners of family-run craft shop to retire after 14 years on high street

Fiona and Bill Joisce at Knitwits

Fiona and Bill Joisce at Knit Wits & Fabrics in Dereham - Credit: Archant

A husband and wife duo who have run an independent craft shop for more than a decade have announced their intention to retire - but the store will remain open for now.

Fiona Joisce, owner of Knit Wits & Fabrics in Dereham. Picture: Knit Wits & Fabrics

Fiona Joisce, owner of Knit Wits & Fabrics in Dereham. - Credit: Archant

Fiona and Bill Joisce built Knit Wits and Fabrics on Dereham's high street from the ground up during the recession in 2007.

Now the pair are looking to sell their business as a going concern to retire later this year but have insisted the store will not be closing.

Mrs Joisce, who said the staff had already been made aware, said: "Bill is 76 now and it's about time we were able to spend our days doing other things.

"The shop will only be sold as a going concern, we will not be closing. We're doing it by word of mouth at the moment and then in the next month or so will put it online.

Knit Wits and Fabrics staff member Lisa Waterhouse, left, and co-owner Fiona Joisce. The shop sells

Knit Wits and Fabrics staff member Lisa Waterhouse, left, and co-owner Fiona Joisce. - Credit: Archant


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"We're thinking if we do it by word of mouth then we know somebody local will take over it and look after it.

"It's like somebody wanting to marry my daughter, you had better talk to me first!"

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Since starting the business 14 years ago, Knit Wits & Fabrics has moved premises twice after outgrowing their previous stores.

Mrs Joisce said that lockdown caused a boom in crafters which is why she is keen for the business to continue as it is still "growing".

"We were really busy when we re-opened last week (April 12) as lots of people took up crafting when there was little else to do in lockdown.

The former Knit Wits shop in Dereham Market Place, which is next to William H Brown. Picture: Matthe

The former Knit Wits shop in Dereham Market Place, which is next to William H Brown. - Credit: Matthew Usher

"Even during lockdown we were doing click and collect services, people would message and ask if we had something for their project and they could come and pick it up.

"I just want to say a massive thank you to everyone who has supported us over the last 14 years, every one of you has helped our business go from strength to strength to the brilliant position we have attained."

Anyone interested in taking over the store should contact Mr and Mrs Joisce by calling the store on 01362 652961 or sending a message on Facebook.

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