20 February 2023

Artisans to market their wares at Dalton's Royal pub

| Sally Hopman
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Man, woman and dog

Jeannette Power with her partner Craig and their dog Rusty outside the historic Dalton Royal Hotel – soon to host the village’s first handmade market on 25 February. Photo: Supplied.

Creators of unique produce to works of art, ranging from soap to tea, woodwork to animal treats, are scattered throughout the Southern Tablelands of NSW.

Artisans who have chosen to live out of town so they can have the space needed to live their passion – and make something no one else does.

Jeannette Power, who, with partner Craig, took over the historic Royal Dalton pub a year ago, had heard there was a lot of talent around, so she decided to invite them to all come to the pub for what she hopes is the first in a yearly event – Dalton’s Hand-Made Festival Market Day on Saturday 25 February.

Originally from Picton, Jeannette knew Dalton reasonably well, driving there regularly with Craig who had been shearing for friends in the village since he was a youngster.

The pub had been closed for a couple of years when the Palmers drove through one day. “Let’s have a look,” Jeannette recalled saying. “We went in, saw the potential of the place – it was a great little community and there were so many people around – and that was it.”

READ ALSO Dalton’s Royal Hotel to reopen after two-year break between drinks

The Royal, which was built in 1865, reopened in December 2021, with Jeannette and Craig behind the bar – and Rusty the dog greeting the patrons – and always leaning in to make new friends and showing off his footy skills.

The couple have organised a number of events since taking over the pub, but the Hand-Made Market Day is the one Jeannette said they were most excited about because she hoped it would do what country pubs were built to do, bring people together.

“So far we have about 17 stallholders,” Jeannette said. “From Ravenspell soaps and beauty products at Yass with the mother and son team who make beautiful candles to the mother and daughter team at Bandicute, near Gunning, who make beautiful clothes for children – I’m so excited about the stallholders who will be coming.”

The only prerequisite for the vendors is that the products be handmade, so there’ll be a wide variety of pieces on show including earrings, quilts, candles, pet treats and gear, woodwork, macrame, tea, metalwork and honey.

Makers are coming from Dalton, Yass, Bowning and as far afield as Mittagong in the Southern Highlands. Others confirmed for the day include: Jumamasquiltz, Jenwren Creatives, Cheeky Mutts, The Makers Shed, Lucky Ladybird, Twigs and Knobs, Studio Jones Mittagong, imaJen Creations, Pilabell, Mavller, Bowning Tea Company and Bella Rose Creations.

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Jeannette said both stallholders and Dalton locals were excited about the upcoming market – the idea being to return the village pub to its original role – as the centre of the community.

“People come into the pub and tell us stories of how it used to be the community hub here,” Jeannette said, “and that’s what we’d like it to be again.

“The place where everyone gathers when they come into town … and there seems to be a lot of really talented, creative people around here.”

The Hand-Made Market is on Saturday, 25 February, at the Royal Hotel Dalton from 10 am to 2 pm. There’ll be live music throughout the day and a special reptile display at midday. Pub food will also be available.

Dalton is about an hour’s drive from Canberra and Goulburn on the Hume Highway.

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