Business is blooming after 55 years

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BEVERLEY’S Glenholme Florists are celebrating 55 blooming years in business.

The business was founded in 1958 by Dennis Glenton as a nursery, growing as well as selling flowers and plants.

The fruit and florist shop followed later, opening in its existing location on Wilbert Lane, Beverley.

As the business grew Rosaleen Holgate joined as a business partner with her floristry skills. The floristry side of the business expanded and developed no longer leaving room for the fruit and vegetable side. The business has continued to grow and develop over the years, with Rosaleen’s two daughters Karen Holgate and Claire Anderson joining the partnership and taking over the running of the business.

Glenholme Florists has had many memorable events over the years as you would well imagine, being asked to design flowers for Royalty amongst them. They have been privileged enough to design flowers for the Queen on more than one occasion and proudly display a thank you letter from the Queen, personally mentioning the table arrangements of vegetables and flowers they designed for her visit to Beverley in 2002. Alongside it is a striking picture of the Queen holding one of the four bouquets they have designed for her. A slightly smaller photograph of the Princess of Wales shows her with the specially designed posy from the midwife association on the opening of the maternity unit at Westwood hospital. We had great fun also creating some very striking designs for the wedding of an England footballer who married locally. The shop features in the current Good Florist Guide, and over the years the shop along with various member of its staff have won numerous awards including the prestigious title of UK Retail Florist of the Year and a very impressive cup to show for it. This was a massive achievement as we were competing against 500 other florist shops for the title and were judged on a wide spectrum of the business including the actual floristry skills, customer service and business acumen.

One of the reasons the business is succeeding in difficult retail times is its ability to continually evolve and develop. We move with the times and develop the business accordingly. You can’t afford to rest on your laurels in any retail business but particularly floristry which is very fashion led with new styles and trends emerging all the time. Our customers want to see modern designs and keep up to date with the latest interior designs and our flowers need to reflect this, which is why we invest a lot into training and development. This is shown by the huge amount of certificates adorning the walls of the florist shop proving they really are a qualified bunch, holding the highest recognised floristry qualifications and encouraging all staff members to follow this route. We are very proud of our staff training policy which has led to a number of our past employees either starting or managing their own businesses, something that the partners are very proud of. Customer service and attention to detail is highly featured in the many thank you letters the shop receives.

Development of the business has led them to having a secure ecommerce website enabling not only local customers but customers from all over the world to have easy access to the shop’s floral offerings. Embracing social media such as Facebook and Twitter has also widened its scope to potential new customers and forged some new and exciting opportunities for the business. Flowers are much more readily accessible and much more an everyday part of people’s lives than ever before, what makes Glenholme Florists stand out from the rest apart from their obvious skill as designers and the huge selection of ever changing flowers and plants, personally selected from suppliers all over the world. The wealth of knowledge on their product and their ability to pass this on to their customers ensuring they get longevity and excellent value for money means happy customers and repeat sales. We treat every sale large or small the same, with attention to detail and a genuine interest in our customer, after all it’s they who have kept us here for the last 55 years and we intend it to continue for a long time to come

The business itself is very diverse with no two days alike, making each day an exciting challenge. We have the great pleasure of being with our customers through the happiest and saddest parts of their lives. We celebrate with flowers, the births, Christenings, special birthday, milestone events, weddings and funerals. Over the years we have been trading we have had a plethora of customers we have got to know and love, and be part of their ups and downs in life. It is a great privilege that we get to share these times and are there to create lasting memories with our floral designs.

Weddings are most definitely the most fun and exciting and the team love to create a bride’s floral vision. Nothing can beat the look of excitement on the bride’s face when her bridal flowers are revealed to her. Wedding flowers have evolved tremendously over the years with a wide variety of themes and trends and a very contrasting mix of venues, making the floral designs more diverse and very personal to the individual couple and their special day.

With the wedding side to the business being very exciting and creative, it’s the funeral and sympathy designs that bring great satisfaction to the busy team. Designing flowers for a funeral is very personal and incredibly important to the family. This is the final gesture they will make to their loved one and we are frequently asked to create designs that reflect the deceased’s personality or interests and it’s so important that we get this right. We have created designs from woodland coffin sprays to reflect the natural beauty of Beverley Westwood to bespoke two or three dimensional designs. These have included dogs, a rabbit, aeroplanes, mountain bikes and a chef’s hat, to mention but a few. These designs take a lot of thought and planning, usually over two or three days, from sketching the design and creating the foundation, to finally sculpting with flowers. The end results have been so realistic that a vicar once thought a live dog was in the rear of the hearse and not one of Glenholme’s floral masterpieces.

I think the key to success has to be the pure passion the team at Glenholme Florists have for every element of floristry they produce, from the single red rose sale at Valentine’s to a full blown wedding or bespoke funeral tribute, each is delivered with the same love and attention to detail.

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