A NEW gift shop has opened in Halesowen by a single mum who gave up a busy career to fulfil her dream.

Something Quirky, an alternative gift shop, has opened in the Plaza Mall.

It sells an array of gifts including spiritual, Gothic, Wiccan and Pagan gifts, as well as incense, crystals and other items for fans of the alternative.

It is run by Tara Cairns, who gave up a busy job as a manager for Welcome Break Services after suffering from burn out.

She wanted to return to her home town after running the stall for two and a half years on Stafford indoor market.

Before that she ran the shop in the pop-up unit in the Cornbow Centre, so has been pleased to see the return of some of her old customers.

Mum-of-one Tara, aged 43, who lives in Halesowen, said: "I've had people coming into the shop and saying "you used to be in the Cornbow Centre didn't you?

"It's really nice to see all the old faces back.

"I'm really into crystals - they can help keep you calm and balanced.

"So far it's going really well."

Tara, whose daughter attends Earls High, gave up her job as manager for Welcome Break services a few years ago after becoming ill.

She said: "I got colitis - one day I was so exhausted I couldn't get out of bed.

"I went to the doctors and was diagnosed with an exhaustion breakdown, or burn out.

"It was a real wake up call. I decided to do something I would enjoy doing.

"As a single mum I wondered if I was doing the right thing, but I took the plunge and haven't looked back - I have survived covid and things are really looking up."

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The shop, which has a Facebook page and website, is open Monday to Saturday from 9am till 4pm.