Kilkenny has long been renowned for its craft industry and visitors to the county can choose from a diverse range of items when shopping for that special gift.
One such industry, Jerpoint Glass Studio in Stoneyford, has been in business for over 30 years and in that time the glass-blowing enterprise has become internationally known. Founded by Keith and Kathleen Leadbetter in the late 1970s, the glass blowers create beautiful handmade glassware for the home.
The family lives in an old farmhouse in an elevated position looking across the valley of the Nore. From the front window can be seen the beautiful and historically important hills of Leinster, which border County Kilkenny and include Brandon Hill, Coppenagh Gap and the Blackstairs Mountains.
At the back of the house, the old stone-walled farm building has been modified over the years and now provides a pleasant working environment and display area for the many visitors who come to see the glass making.
Last week the factory played host to a group of students from Barcelona and Ireland as part of A Youth Exchange in Dublin.
The group was taken through the process of making a bowl by James Long and Rory Leadbetter.
in conjunction with the Kilkenny Arts Festival, Jerpoint is set to host an exhibition of recent batik paintings by Bernadette Madden, entitled “Sunlight and Shadow.” The exhibition will run until September 7.