Published on 8 - August - 2012
New developments at Cardwell Garden Centre mark 50 yearsA Renfrewshire garden centre is marking its 50th anniversary this year with the introduction of a new customer reward card and an ecommerce website.
Eric Gallagher receives his lifetime achievement award
The family-owned and run Cardwell Garden Centre, in Gourock, Inverclyde, also recently underwent a complete rebranding which, it says, "has brought the company image up to date to represent a modern business with a secure history in gardening and retail".
The moves are just the latest in an ongoing programme of development and improvement at Cardwell, whose retail area now comprises over 100,000sq ft of covered space and whose 300-seater restaurant is in its third incarnation.
Introduced four months ago, the customer reward card is already paying dividends, partner Kieran Gallagher told diyweek.net.
"It's been taken up much quicker than we anticipated," he explained. "We'd targeted a minimum of 1,500 cardholders for the first 12 months, but we're currently at just shy of 2,000."
And the company is hoping for similar success with the new online store, launched just two weeks ago with high expectations to deliver all kinds of products throughout the UK. Craft products, gifts and kitchenware are expected to be particularly popular.
Just before Christmas last year, everything from interior and exterior signage to vehicles and stationery was rebranded, and the clothes and crafts departments have also been expanded. The latter is an especially strong sector for Cardwell, with its craft and hobby centre winning a national award from Creativity Magazine this year for its product displays.
Cardwell has major plans for the coming winter too.
"We're hoping to do two developments," said Mr Gallagher: "the bedding plant area would all go to indoor retail area, and the other development if finances allow would be a whole facelift for the entrance."
Meanwhile, to cap his achievements over the last 50 years, Cardwell's founder and chairman Eric Gallagher has received a lifetime achievement award from Greenock Chamber of Commerce, recognising his services to business and the local community.
Mr Gallagher already holds a Rotary Club Paul Harris award and the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society's award for significant contribution to horticulture in Scotland.
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