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Wild and Free Gallery Opens in Whitley Bay

Local artist Gail Curry has been based in Whitley Bay for seven years and is probably best known for her colourful felt creations that flowed out of her former business Happy Planet, based on Ilfracombe Gardens.

However, Gail began to paint in 2017 and found over time her enjoyment and the challenge of painting to be more attractive to her as an artist than working in felt. 

Gail launched Happy Planet from her kitchen table in 2014 and, during the following eight years, the gift shop and gallery went from strength to strength, seeing her win regional awards at the Great British Entrepreneur Awards and North Tyneside Business of the Month. 

However, Gail has now decided to follow her passion for painting and has fully refurbished and transformed the former gift shop into a contemporary art gallery.

The gallery, at 3A Ilfracombe Gardens, will showcase a selection of Gail’s own work, alongside other artists’ work in Whitley Bay.

The bright and spacious gallery features original works from over twenty artists, both local and national, working in a variety of mediums, which include ceramics, printmaking, painting and jewellery. There is also a programme of regular monthly exhibitions for visitors to enjoy, and Gail hopes that visitors may even be inspired to try some creative work of their own.

The gallery is open 9.30 am – 5 pm from Wednesday to Saturday, and you can find more information by visiting