Boosey's Garden Centre rejuvenates in recession

Boosey's Garden Centre, in Middlewich, Cheshire, has received a new lease of life after a developer pulled out of a scheme to knock down the 200-year-old business and build high-street shops in its place.

Owner Paul Morris said Huddersfield developer John Radcliffe's plans to build six shopping units on Newton Bank have been put on hold because of the recession.

Morris said: "We have had interest shown by developers but because of the recession we are going to continue (to trade).

"If anything, we have benefited from the recession because it means we are still here and we are hoping to expand the business."

He added that grow-your-own sales were 40% up this year but that did not make up for a crash in big-ticket sales: "Grow-your-own growth has been counter-balanced by high-ticket items that didn't sell.

"We're not recession-proof but we're doing better than the high street. Obviously, the recession has been a tough time for shoppers but it has given us a new lease of life."

The development plans were given the go-ahead by the former Congleton Borough Council last year. Work had been expected to start this summer.

The business began in 1787 as a seed company and became Boosey's in 1860, when it supplied fruit trees to local estates. Morris is the fifth generation of his family to run the centre.

 

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