A BRIDPORT antiques store is celebrating its third anniversary.

The Alleyways on St Michael’s Trading Estate actually opened five years ago, but it transformed itself in August 2011 and took on the new name.

Richard Payne-Withers, of The Alleyways, said: “Many people said that, during a recession, buying a fledgling business tucked away in a corner of a trading estate in Dorset was verging on madness, but after three years the centre, with its 18 traders, has spread its wings and grown to house over 45 traders under one very big roof.

“To our customers, suppliers and traders, thank you, as all this could not have been achieved without your help and support over the last three years.”

He added that St Michael’s is a place that is dedicated to start-up and early stage companies, and businesses are thriving in the popular arts and vintage quarter.

Regular open art studios events and the reinstatement of Bridport Vintage Market have also helped to attract people to the area.

Mr Payne-Withers added: “The growth of the artisan area of the estate is proof that it works. The corner of the estate known as the art and vintage quarter has flourished from its early beginnings more than 15 years ago, a handful of artists were joined by the first antiques and vintage shop.”