Tomlins Garden Centre sold to Bonnetts Garden Village

Specialist commercial property adviser Quinton Edwards has confirmed the sale of Tomlins Garden Centre to Bonnetts Garden Village.

Chris Bonnett and manager Kevin Hadlow
Chris Bonnett and manager Kevin Hadlow

The redeveloped garden centre in Brentwood, Essex, will be opened in two phases. Phase one opened in May 2017. A coffee shop and extended homewares offering will follow.

Quinton Edwards acted for the vendors. 

Manager is Kevin Hadlow, previously a general manager at Dobbies. The planteria manager Trina Simmans is from Perrywoods.

Garden sector entrepreneur Chris Bonnett, of online specialist Gardening Express, says he will spend £1.2m on the site, which could ultimately turnover £8m.

He said: "We have a lot of interesting ideas to bring in that just aren’t being done by any other garden centre or chain. We are starting as we mean to go on. The new business will be structured in such a way that once the model we plan to implement has been proven, we will be able to roll it out to other stores."

The site was previously closed for nearly two years. A new main centre building, by Newspan, of around 15,000 sq ft has been erected. Bonnett plans to replace the old glasshouses on the site with further retail space of a similar size and a 200-300 seat restaurant. There could be click and collect.

He said: "This will be a flagship store, that we hope others in the sector will look to judge themselves by. It won’t happen overnight, but we want to get everything ready for next year’s peak season, and if possible by this Christmas."

His 14 acre nursery is at Chelmsford, also in Essex.

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