A wool shop with hidden treasures…


Following careers in the food industry, social services and hospitality Catherine Duffin decided a change of direction was needed. She moved to Scarborough in 1994 and had run a hotel for 9 years before selling the business. She always had quite a keen interest in crafts with knitting being a firm favourite so joined a knitting group at her local wool shop. When the owner decided to close the business she began to formulate a plan to take over the lease.

After months of hard work, her new business, Alibaabaas, opened in March this year and stocks yarns and accessories for yarn crafts – the only shop of its kind in Scarborough.

Catherine has been supported by the York & North Yorkshire Chamber Start Up programme to get the business off the ground. She said: “I have had tremendous support from my business coach Chris Goddard. I think I would have been overwhelmed had I tried to go it alone.”

She adds: The best thing about starting up is the excitement of something new – this has already boosted my confidence and helped me regain my independence.”

Her advice to anyone starting their own business would be: “Get sound advice and professional help to keep you on track with what needs to be done. Keep your mind on what you want to achieve and don’t give up.”


About to launch a business? then contact the West & North Yorkshire Chamber for available support.


Do the numbers stack up ? Click here for a cash flow template.

Business Support