AN entrepreneur has set up shop in an old carpet warehouse and hopes to develop it for furniture and craft traders.

Matt Stanbury has taken on the former Allied Carpets premises on the Seacourt Retail Park, Botley, Oxford. He wants to offer small businesses a retail space and to also run a craft fair.

Mr Stanbury, who runs his own restored furniture business, Class Eco-Design, has obtained the space, which has been empty for more than three years, rent-free.

He said: “There is nothing in Oxford like this offering crafts and ‘upcycled’ furniture.

“I have travelled around the region and seen local co-operatives and pop-up shops set up in other towns and this seemed a good opportunity.”

Mr Stanbury’s plan is to attract traders into the building rent-free. They will share the costs of staffing and heating. Already he has six businesses signed up.

Ultimately, the building, owned by the BA pension fund, is set to be part of a £15m redevelopment of the park.