February / March 2020 issue of the independent North Devon-based business magazine covering news about business and enterprise in Barnstaple, Bideford, Braunton, Chulmleigh, Combe Martin, Holsworthy, Ilfracombe, Lynmouth, Lynton, South Molton, Torrington, Woolacombe and more.
This issue includes the Business Action Awards 2020, North Devon's independent business awards.
Retirement is a major challenge the retail sector needs to overcome. Many of our finest shops have been run for decades by owners who eventually need to retire. Either they have to find a buyer to continue the business or else close. Sadly, many good shops close when new buyers cannot be found. There is a need to inspire more younger people to come forward and continue the great tradition of highquality independent retailing. This situation occurred recently when the owner of Exmoor Flowers, Stephanie Kingston, decided to retire after running the shop as a newsagent and than as a florist since 2005. Staff member Laura Dyer was devastated at the thought of not dealing with flowers anymore and ended up buying the business. “I’d never thought about running my own florist,” says Laura. “I never had the confidence to but, after a bit of persuasion, guidance and a good old confidence boost, in September 2019 I bought Exmoor Flowers and relocated to 42 Lee Road, Lynton.” Many of Laura’s family had lived in Lynton for years before her parents moved there in 2006. She followed and completed her degree in theatre and performance at Plymouth University and was planning to return to London Canine Cottages, operated by The Travel Chapter in Bideford, has been named headline sponsor of national Bring Your Dog To Work Day on 26 June. This year the campaign will be raising money for All Dogs Matter and Animals Asia. Simon Lockyer of Canine until she married and had two children. Her introduction to Exmoor Flowers was as a part-time assistant covering a member of staff ’s sick leave, but four years later she was a full-time member of staff with experienced knowledge of all things floristry. After countless weddings and funerals, Laura loves her work so much that she decided to buy the business so that she could continue doing what she loves. “It was a massive step for me. I was always used to working for other people, but with help and marketing from NEWS Flower shop blooms under new ownership Laura Dyer of Exmoor Flowers, Lynton my husband, who works next door to me, I slowly started to grow more confidence and get into the swing of being a business owner. “I knew that one of the keys to success was social media and from day dot I’ve put almost every bouquet, arrangement, wedding and funeral tribute on my Instagram and Facebook pages and the clients came flooding in. “My flowers come from a wholesaler called St Mellion Flowers based in Saltash, Cornwall. They come to North Devon several times a week Bring your dog to work day sponsor Cottages says: “We’ve been taking part in Bring Your Dog To Work Day for a number of years now and are thrilled to be the headline sponsors for 2020 to support the important work of the two charities. We specialise in taking dogs and their humans on holiday, but of course we can’t be on holiday all the time, so the next best thing is to be able to take your dog to work.” ■■bringyourdogtoworkday.co.uk with the freshest of flowers from all over the world, but mainly Holland and the UK. “Red roses for Valentine’s come from Colombia. They are soil grown, not factory produced, so they aren’t cheap, but are exceptionally beautiful and long lasting. “I have a varied range of customers from local hotels and restaurants, to recurring customers, local and non-local.” Laura adds that trends change fast and that currently English-grown flowers are popular: “Bohemian/botanical wild flowers, hedgerow, bushy and plenty of foliage especially eucalyptus – it’s everywhere and every bride wants it! “I’m constantly trying to think of new and quirky floristry ideas . . . pumpkin arrangements at Halloween were a massive hit – locals went crazy for them. It was a messy job, however.” Laura works by herself, although is supported by her cousin for deliveries and is delighted that Stephanie helps her out when she needs floristry advice. “I have amazing friends and family that are always around for constant support. It’s hard work getting the people in, but I’ve never felt so happy.” ■■Details 01598 753 322 or exmoorflowers.co.uk Beautiful candles – Handmade in Devon SHOWROOM & STUDIO Lyn Candles . Lynton . N. Devon . EX35 6BS Tel: 01598 753321 www.lyncandles.com e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org 4 business action | February / March2020 | business-action.co.uk
NEWS The Carlton, Ilfracombe • 24 hour delegate rates available • Fully catered team building • Michelin dining experience • Participative courses • Business facilities Call today for our training packages, price & information 01271 862446 ilfracombecarlton.co.uk Be Ready to attract more Purple Pounds Devon’s ‘Be Ready’ Employer Hub service is preparing its formal launch around the county with an event planned for Barnstaple in April when North Devon businesses, charities and social enterprises are invited to find out how it can help them – watch for the date here in BusinessAction. The ‘Be Ready’ Employer Hub aims to help employers understand how they can provide meaningful employment opportunities for people with a disability or long-term health condition. Along with practical assistance (via online info hub and telephone helpline), learning opportunities (disability awareness training) and networking opportunities – all free – it will share facts and figures to overcome the misconceptions about employing people with disabilities. Did you know? ➤➤According to the Government’s 2018 Family Resource Survey, there are 13.9 million disabled people in the UK (ie individuals who reported they have a disability, which means the actual number will be higher). In the South West, 20% of the population are disabled (just slightly below the UK’s 21%). ➤➤In 2019, 7.6 million people of working age (16-64) reported having a disability – 18% of the working age population. BUT disabled people have a much higher rate of unemployment (8.0% in January-March 2019 compared with 3.3% for people without disabilities). The majority of disabled people want to work. ➤➤83% of disabilities are gained while of working age. ➤➤By the year 2030, 40% of working age adults will have a long-term health condition. If you think your business would have to make big changes to employ a person with a disability, think again. What do you think of when the word ‘disability’ is mentioned? Most of us think of someone in a wheelchair – but less than 10% of disabled people are wheelchair users. 80% of disabled people have invisible or hidden disabilities (eg hearing loss, Crohn’s and Colitis). And often the changes needed are minor – just as adaptations are made for anyone joining as a new employee. Are you missing sales? How well do you know your customers? If a fifth of the UK population has a disability, how many of your existing customers have a disability? The ‘Be Ready’ Employer Hub will also show businesses how to access the ‘Purple Pound’ market. This is the spending power of disabled people, their family and friends, worth £249 billion a year. By ignoring the needs of disabled people, businesses are losing money without knowing it. For example, how accessible is your web site? Up to 75% of potential customers who are disabled have walked away from shops or clicked away from web sites because of the barriers put in their way. Want to know more? Get in touch with Debbie Stafford (debbie.stafford@devon. gov.uk) or project co-ordinator Sue Windley (susan.windley@ devon.gov.uk). ■■Details readydevon.org.uk Biggest local B2B event returns on Thursday 29 October ➤➤Where can you discover new businesses and make new contacts? ➤➤Where can you see a showcase of products and services of value to your business? ➤➤Where can you find the advice and support you need to grow your North Devon business? Now in its third year, Bideford Business Expo is North Devon’s business exhibition combining presentations, promotion and networking to: ➤➤build business relationships ➤➤create new opportunities ➤➤provide business advice ➤➤support business growth Earlybird stand prices Exhibitor stands available now at early bird prices – £75 and £125 – when booked and paid before 30 April 2020. ■■Book at bbxpo.uk Friendly, Reliable, Affordable • Accounts • Bookkeeping • Limited Companies • VAT • Tax • Payroll / CIS Over 20 years experience - Free initial meeting email@example.com T: 01409 254817 M: 07811 164428 The Old Orchard | Holsworthy | Devon | EX22 6LT Sunday Carvery £10.95 (£14.95 including desert) 01237 473399 49 Torrington Street, East the Water, EX39 4DP www.theriverbankbistro.co.uk firstname.lastname@example.org @businessactionm | February / March2020 | business action 5