Family-run art and framing shop in Hilsea to close its doors for the last time after 41 years in business

A FRAMING and art shop that has been putting its customers in the picture since the 1980s is closing, as the owner has decided it’s ‘the right time’ to retire.

Thursday, 14th October 2021, 4:07 pm
Updated Thursday, 14th October 2021, 9:29 pm

Toms Framing on London Rd, Hilsea has provided framing services, art materials and artwork for 41 years, but owner Suzanne Brown, 66, from Bosham, has decided it’s time to retire and said ‘it’s the end of an era.’

Her father started the business in 1980 and also owned The Fareham Gallery in West Street, Fareham, which Suzanne’s brother runs. The business was passed down to Suzanne when her father retired in the mid-1980s, and her son Tom, 39, has worked in the shop since he was a teenager.

In its time, the shop has framed all sorts of items, such as Houdini’s handcuffs, a Persian carpet, military medals and lots of T-shirts.

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Owners Tom Brown and his mother, Suzanne Brown. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Suzanne said: ‘It’s fascinating, we’ve had some lovely pictures and family history things, lots of sentimental things which once they’re framed, it gives them a whole new lease of life.’

She hopes that the business has had an asset to the community, and said that customers have said they will be sad to see them go.

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The shop proudly owns a state-of-the-art computerised mount cutter, which simplifies the designing and cutting of framing mounts. The Wizard Computerised Mount Cutter will be taken home and used in the family’s workshop.

Owners Tom Brown and his mother, Suzanne Brown. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Suzanne plans to stay in touch with a lot of their long-time customers, and wants to thank them for their loyalty over the years.

She said: ‘It’s been good meeting so many people and also building relationships with other framers in the town, we all help each other out and it’s been a great trade to be in.’

Looking to her retirement, Suzanne is looking forward to gardening, spending time with her grandchildren and getting back into her hobby of sailing. Tom said he doesn’t have any plans just yet but is hoping to put more time into his interests in film and music.

Toms Framing will close on Saturday, October 16.

Owners Tom Brown and his mother, Suzanne Brown. Picture: Habibur Rahman

The shop is going to be replaced with The Hair Boutique & Beauty salon, which is currently situated across the road from the property, at 415 London Rd.

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