TWO artists who were given funding to open a community ceramic studio in Bournemouth urgently need to find new premises.

Pauline Stanley, who runs the Artisan community art studio in Moordown, and partner Tim Russell received a £9,000 Grants for Arts award and intended to use an empty room in the First Point Plus building where the Artisan studio is based.

But after 10 months of negotiations with Bournemouth council the lease has not been granted, which means the ceramic studio plans have stalled and Pauline and Tim have to go back to the drawing board in trying to find a new home. The studio needs to be up and running by the end of August or the money will have to be returned.

The project is to be managed by Tim, who has a BA in Fine Arts and a background in working with mental health. Two other experienced ceramic teachers have also been lined up to work there.

Pauline said: "It will be run on the same model as Artisan Studio - working with disability groups during the week and public sessions in the evenings and weekends.

"There will be a membership scheme whereby ceramic artists can use the studio for a certain number of hours per week and people can just buy kiln time. We will be working with home educating families too.

"It will be set up as a sustainable working model which will require no further funding but will be viable long-term. It will bring great benefits to the community of Bournemouth and there is no other ceramic studio like this in the area.

"The Arts Council have kindly given us an extension on the project but we need to have it up and running by the end of August otherwise we might have to return the funding, which we really don't want to do."

Anyone who could help suggest a new home for the project can contact Pauline on 07729 829209.