Archive for the ‘Latest News’ Category

Two new big name brands move into North Point Shopping Centre

March 23rd, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

Bransholme’s North Point Shopping Centre is to welcome two new big name brands to its growing portfolio of stores, by welcoming plus-size fashion retailer, Yours Clothing (pictured), as well as Yorkshire-based food retailer, Fultons Foods, taking a combined total of 5,000 sq. ft. of retail space.

The first of the two new stores, Yours Clothing will open today (Thursday, March 22, 2018) with Fultons Foods opening their doors on Friday, March 23, 2018.

Yours Clothing has said that it has created seven new positions to support its new store, and Fultons Foods, has created a further six jobs for the people of Bransholme and wider community in Hull. Both companies say that following a successful recruitment campaign, all of their vacancies have been filled.

North Point Shopping centre manager, Louise Smith, says: “Welcoming these new stores to the Centre is a fantastic achievement for all those involved and we’re thrilled they’ve chosen North Point to house their latest locations. The store openings cement the Centre’s reputation as a key shopping and community destination for our visitors. We wish both Yours Clothing and Fultons all the best for many years of success to come.”

The new stores come after a buoyant period for North Point Shopping Centre, which include Home Bargains’ and Heron Foods’ relocations to larger units, offering an expanded range of products and the recent introduction of Lincolnshire Co-operative and Holland & Barrett.


Tarkett will showcase new collections at Retail Design Expo

March 22nd, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments


Tarkett will be exhibiting at Retail Design Expo for the 3rd year running, on Stand D171. The stand will feature three pop-up micro structures showcasing Tarkett’s customisation services and new product launches for 2018.

In the customisation pop-up, Tarkett will focus on its LVT collection, iD Mixonomi, which offers architects and designers unparalleled opportunities to push the boundaries with flooring designs. Inspired by the iconic hexagon, the iD Mixonomi range features 10 compatible geometric shapes and sizes, which can be combined in a multitude of layouts. A striking palette of 33 colours has been created around a central colour theme of bold trend-led shades, deep complementary hues and metallic highlights.

The second pop-up will preview Tarkett’s forthcoming LVT collections, iD Supernature & iD Tattoo, to be launched in May, which were created to reveal the potential of modular vinyl materials for designing remarkable interiors. The combination of iD Supernature and iD Tattoo allows architects and designers to re-invent flooring through the customisation of modular vinyl, and to design inspirational and sophisticated spaces.

Drawing inspiration from organic sources, iD Supernature offers a selection of subtle textures based on natural materials (like wood, stone and concrete) in 16 shades. The collection builds on Tarkett’s commitment to innovation to ensure a non-repetition pattern of up to 12m2. With 12 possible formats — including planks and hexagons — architects and designers will have plenty of scope for mixing, matching and customising to achieve unique designs.

Adding another layer of customisation, iD Tattoo allows architects and designers to take their designs a step further by combining natural and graphic elements. Architects and designers can choose from a selection of 10 “tattoo” patterns, adding iD Tattoo to their chosen iD Supernature base. This unleashes the potential for extensive personalisation, with the choice of either tone-on-tone or colourful renderings. With their ability to be applied all over— rather than being limited to plank-by-plank or tile-by-tile application— iD Tattoo’s patterns are very versatile, giving designers the freedom to let their imagination soar.

The third pop-up will showcase Cementi Click, the ultimate innovative solution combining the look and feel of premium mineral ceramics with quick and easy installation.

Tarkett’s Inspiration Book PLAY 2018 will be available on the stand so visitors can explore the four modern and inspirational ways to mix and play with flooring colours, textures and formats to help create an exceptional experience that customers will remember.

More information on product launches and our co-creation service, along with other product ranges for the retail environment, will be available on Tarkett’s stand D171.



For more information on our products visit or email

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March 22nd, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

  • Cosy Club and Seasalt both signed to open in Surrey for the first time
  • Terms now agreed on 85% of the 80,000 sq ft retail and leisure development
  • Tunsgate Quarter, Guildford’s high-quality retail and leisure development, is now open

Queensberry has signed Cosy Club and Seasalt, both new to Surrey, for Tunsgate Quarter, its new 80,000 sq ft retail and leisure development in the heart of Guildford town centre. As a result of these new announcements, terms have now been agreed on 85% of the space, just six days after launch.

Cosy Club, the quirky and eccentric casual dining operator, has signed to open a 7,935 sq ft restaurant. The operator will provide an all-day offer, serving everything from a lazy breakfast to brunch and tapas to evening cocktails. It will also benefit from a private dining room, ideal for private parties and events. Cosy Club is famed for its eclectic, vintage interior style based on the features and history of the buildings, towns and cities in which it’s located. At Tunsgate Quarter, the operator will benefit from the addition of a new feature balcony, overlooking Guildford’s sett-lined High Street and the famous Clock Tower.

Amber Wood, Managing Director at Cosy Club, said: “We’re delighted to have signed at Tunsgate Quarter and can’t wait for the restaurant to open in June. Queensberry’s vision has really come to life now the centre is open and visitors can experience the fantastic space that has been created. Cosy Club will really add something new to the centre, complementing the F&B offer due to open over the coming weeks and months.”

Seasalt, the family-run, Cornwall-based clothing, homeware and accessories retailer, has signed up for a 1,370 sq ft unit at Tunsgate Quarter. The retailer will boost the centre’s line-up of premium lifestyle brands, joining OKA and Loaf, also new to Guildford and The White Company, which has doubled in size and moved to Tunsgate Quarter from its existing Guildford location.

Neil Chadwick, co-founder of Seasalt, said: “We’re thrilled to be able to bring Seasalt to Guildford as we continue to expand our business. Tunsgate Quarter was too good an opportunity to ignore, as the centre offers a great mix of lifestyle brands and it’s set in a brilliant location. Guildford has great charisma and such a great catchment, so the destination was the obvious choice. We’re looking forward to welcoming everyone to our new shop.”

Tunsgate Quarter opened to the public last week following a comprehensive 18-month refurbishment programme to remodel and extend the centre. The refurbishment includes the creation of two new levels to the rear of the scheme and has created a thoroughfare between the High Street and its surrounding roads.

Chris Daly, Senior Leasing Manager at Queensberry, said: “The opening event at Tunsgate Quarter last week was enormously successful with hugely positive feedback from both retailers and visitors to the centre across its first few days. We’re thrilled to announce two new names just a few days after launch. The addition of Cosy Club will create a really diverse F&B offer at the centre, bringing something new to Tunsgate Quarter, whilst Seasalt will boost the exciting line-up of premium lifestyle brands.”

The stylish retail and leisure destination is home to a number of premium lifestyle brands including OKA, The White Company, Loaf, Bobbi Brown, lululemon and Cath Kidston. The Ivy Castle View, with an al-fresco dining terrace overlooking Guildford Castle and its gardens, is due to open on 4th April. Later in the spring, Nespresso, Pho and now Cosy Club and Seasalt will also join the line-up.


Sign & Digital UK announces new Main Stage Theatre line-up, headlined by Mary Portas

March 21st, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

Sign & Digital UK has announced its main stage theatre schedule and speaker line-up headlined by celebrity retail expert, Mary Portas. The country’s leading trade exhibition for the sign making, display and digital printing industry returns to the NEC Birmingham from 24th to 26th April 2018.

In keeping with this year’s theme – Creativity Bought to Life – the main stage theatre will double-up as a TV studio, capturing content and also using the studio as a base to film the many demos, workshops and exhibition stands across the show floor.

To celebrate the show’s opening, visitors will be able to hear from celebrity retail and business champion Mary Portas, who will be interviewed on the main stage and then answering questions from the audience. After her main stage appearance, Mary will be visiting stands and demo areas at the show to interact with industry suppliers and experts and discuss the latest developments and innovations in the market.

The theatre’s extensive programme of free-to-attend sessions runs across the three show days, covering a diverse range of topics: from interior surface décor to vehicle wrapping and the future of the industry. Expert speakers will be discussing market trends, practical applications and the profound influence of creative signage and display in customer experience. The recently published Sign & Digital Explains guides to added revenue streams will feature in a series of interactive sessions on every day of the show.

Another new initiative from the show organisers is the introduction of three industry panel debates to discuss current and future industry topics.

Tuesday 24th April’s debate is headlined ‘’Bringing the modern workspace to life’’ and leading names from the interiors and workspace design arena including agencies Align and Interaction, along with Roland DG UK, will look at the ways inspirational graphics, printed textiles, signage and even wayfinding can bring the modern workplace to life.

On Wednesday 25th April, senior experts from Spandex, Hybrid Services/Mimaki, the BPIF -British Printing Industries Federation, Allen Signs, Signs Express and Epson will form a panel debating the future for the market. The panel will be chaired by Gareth Ward, editor of Print Business, and the discussion will touch on the next big thing, whether price will be even more of an issue or will customer service win in the future, and where wide format is headed next.

The Thursday 26th April debate, chaired by David Catanach, director of the British Sign and Graphics Association, is headlined ‘’ Running a successful business in the Sign & Graphics market’’ and the panel will comprise senior executives from Signbox, Hexis, Blackman & White, Signarama and DMA Signs. Topics to be debated include whether creativity is key to offering client solutions, and what the priorities are to keep your business at the cutting edge.

Event director, Rudi Blackett said: “We’re delighted to offer our 2018 visitors a wider range of learning and advice than ever before, with an exciting line-up of experts to deliver the education programme in the main stage theatre. This is addition to the three new Live Demo areas covering textile printing, décor and wrapping, and the new look Adobe and Corel theatres and Signmakers workshop.”

“This year’s show sees new content for our core sign, print and finishing and display markets, as well as the design and creative, textile print, event build and interior décor sectors. Our engaging programme will highlight the growing opportunity in these areas.”

Sign & Digital UK 2018 takes place at the NEC, Birmingham from 24th to 26th April 2018 and is free to attend for visitors.

How will NRF shape retail in 2018?

March 21st, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

By Graham Jackson, CEO of Fluent Commerce

With retail’s biggest technology show over for another year, there has been much innovation and insight for industry decision makers to absorb. The exponential evolution of retail technology and how retailers can best utilise this to create an omnichannel, unified commerce experience, was one of the biggest talking points at NRF.

With over 16,000 exhibitors and 36,000 delegates in attendance, here are some other key headlines from this year’s show and how they’ll influence retail throughout 2018.

Shoppers are not differentiating between channels

These days customers don’t think about the channels that they are using. When customers are buying things either online or in-store this is a single experience for them which results in the outcome of how they view and rate this company. As a result, retailers need to focus on giving customers what they want, when they want it and how they want it, in order to keep up with current customer behaviour and expectations.

The importance of customer experience

With online purchasing growing rapidly, many retailers have prioritised enhancing their customers’ ecommerce experience. Although this approach can be considered – due to the ever-increasing number of online conversions – retailers shouldn’t underestimate the power of face-to-face engagement in keeping existing customers happy and attracting new audiences.

Despite retailers making huge strides to improve the online customer experience through personalisation, consumers still want to feel like an individual. This is best facilitated through a retailer’s staff speaking directly with the customer, ideally in person or through an online chat tool, understanding exactly what they require; supporting, rather than replacing, automated online self service and recommendations.

This level of engagement, alongside how the retailer can offer improved convenience, upsell and cross-sell related products to the customer, provide increased choice, an integrated omnichannel experience, and competitive pricing, significantly influences customer loyalty and satisfaction.

The growth of personalisation

One of the key headlines from NRF was that customer personalisation will gradually move from simplistic, seemingly endless streams of suggested products, based on buying habits and what is included in an online shopping basket, to a refined and less cluttered approach.

This can be facilitated through retailers ensuring that personalised customer experiences are provided across all channels, looking for innovative ways in which they can build on the standard email of product recommendations. This can include geo-location and targeting capabilities, which provides customers with a real-time view of product availability in various stores and the proximity of those items. Retailers should also be investing resources in analysing the insights of how customers like to consume this information, tailoring their approach accordingly.

The real differentiator; retailers should also be considering how the consumer would like to receive their products, whether they would like to collect in-store, with preferred, ‘favourite’ locations saved (based on previous buying habits), next-day home delivery, or any other customer options, depending on which is most convenient.

Decreasing hype of the mobile

If the whisperings are to be believed, the hype of mobile has plateaued. That’s not to say that retailers have underestimated the influence of the platform in offering an end-to-end omnichannel experience, far from it.

With mobile-only transactions accounting for an increasingly large proportion of sales, retailers need to think more strategically about how to best utilise handheld ecommerce. Again, this will enable them to gain a deeper insight into how to better engage with those customers that frequently use mobiles, building a more personal relationship.

From a retailer’s perspective, in-store tooling on mobile devices will continue to streamline inventory management, offering increased flexibility and mobility.

Investment in technology

The development and implementation of innovative technologies by retailers will continue to prove crucial in how they engage with customers. Retailers cannot afford to be complacent when analysing how this technology will be used; they need be taking actions based on the insights gathered through these platforms.

This is the only way in which retailers can consistently meet – and exceed – customer expectations. To effectively provide a unified omnichannel experience, retailers must deploy real-time rapid order orchestration solutions that will make the customer journey, from order to delivery, as seamless as possible.

The International VM Awards by RDE

March 20th, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

The shortlist has been announced for the 2018 International VM Awards by Retail Design Expo, which recognises and rewards the very best examples of window dressings, POP and displays across all sectors and seasons.

The awards, which are running for the second consecutive year, attracted more than 140 entries from around the world, including Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Australia.

Retailers, brands, shopping centres, high streets and creative agencies submitted admissions to an expert judging panel including: Adrienne Davitt, VM director at The Body Shop; Clare Otte, VM director at Foot Locker; Aoife Blicher, head of VM at Magasin du Nord; Caroline Baldwin, editor of Essential Retail and Matthew Valentine, editor of Retail Design World.

Sarah Adams, Retail Design Expo show director, commented: “We are delighted to announce the shortlist for the International VM Awards by RDE. We are delighted to have attracted so many high calibre entries from a variety of different organisations both in the UK and overseas. We are looking forward to showcasing the very best in visual merchandising displays this industry has to offer and of course to announcing the winner of the show”

All shortlisted entries will be displayed at the Retail Design Expo, taking place at London’s Olympia on 2nd-3rd May 2018, with the winners be announced on 3rd May at 1.20 pm in the VM Conference Theatre.

Shortlists for individual categories are as follows: –

Beauty and Cosmetics

Molton Brown – Christmas

Neom – Leeds store

Tryano – Ramadan display


Best use of Digital

Lululemon entry 1

Topshop entry 1



DIY, Homewares and Garden Centres





Grocery – including supermarkets, food and drink


Premier Foods

Kinder Surprise


Sports goods, toys, hobbies and pet care


Lululemon entry 1

Sweaty Betty


IT, Telecomms and Electricals





Shopping centres, towns and airports

Shopping Centre Management Corporation

SM Aura Premier entry 1

SM Prime Holdings 1 – dinosaurs


Most outstanding feature or prop

SM Aura Premier entry 1

Level Kids entry 2 – Aloha



Fashion, Footwear and Jewellery

Michael Kors entry 1

Joseph entry 2 Shimmer curtain

Hackett – Henley Royal Regatta


Department stores

Level Kids – pumpkins

Steen & Strom



March 20th, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

Shaftesbury has announced that realbuzz, the independent performance leisure and fitness brand, has selected Seven Dials to launch a 3,000 sq ft store.

The Seven Dials realbuzz concept store will be the first in London’s West End and feature a range of unique elements such as interactive screens, in-store health and fitness classes and educational ‘zones’ to further enhance the customer experience.  realbuzz will open its doors for the first time in April and is part of the brands UK expansion plans.

Commenting on the news, Sam Bain-Mollison, Head of Retail at Shaftesbury, said: “realbuzz is an exciting brand for Seven Dials and we are thrilled they have selected Neal Street to launch their London store.  Youth fashion, now heavily influenced by sportswear, continues to grow and realbuzz and the brands they feature, specifically caters to that market.  Located alongside Ellesse, Nixon, Urban Outfitters and Vans, realbuzz creates a set of complementary brands for Seven Dials’ visitors especially focused on this trend.”

Paul Eaton, Chief Marketing Officer at realbuzz, added: “Making an entrance to the London market is an important next step for us and we’re very excited to be creating a concept store in Seven Dials.  Its reputation and high footfall, which is sustained well into the evening, attracted us to this location and will provide great exposure and visibility for our brand – and our brand partners – in the heart of London’s West End.  Whether our customers want to look good in the gym, own the latest fitness accessories, or wear the highest quality footwear for their next training run or event, we will ensure their realbuzz experience is one to enjoy.”

In the last six months, Seven Dials has welcomed SONOS’ first UK store located at Earlham Street and recently launched the Ellesse European flagship store in December.

JLL and Nash Bond represented Shaftesbury.  Metis acted for realbuzz.


March 20th, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

Time Out Love London Awards 2018 now open for voting to celebrate the capital’s great independent businesses

A big celebration of small businesses is returning to the capital as Time Out, the global brand that inspires people to make the most of the city, opens voting for its Love London Awards 2018.

The awards honour the most loved venues in cities around the world, voted for by locals. Whether it is the dive bar with the most experimental cocktails, the music venue showcasing the next big thing or the secret sunny beer garden off the high street – Londoners have lots of love for those hidden gems in their city. They can now get behind them and vote for their favourite local, independent businesses to give them the recognition they deserve.

Voting for the Time Out Love London Awards is open from 6 March until 10 April 2018, across 13 categories, including: the most loved local restaurant, bar or pub, LGBTQ hangout, cultural spot and others. Voted for entirely by Londoners, the winners will be revealed on 2 May.

The last Time Out Love London Awards brought into the spotlight some unique businesses that locals just can’t live without: Yard Sale Pizza in Hackney bagged the top restaurant spot, The Alma in Islington was London’s best boozer, The ArtHouse Crouch End made it three wins in a row as the number one cultural hub, Cheeses of Muswell Hill was named best shop and Highness Café and Tea Room in Highbury topped the café rankings.

This year’s Awards are bigger than ever, launching in 15 cities around the world. This is part of Time Out’s commitment to help people discover the best of the city and support local businesses while also offering them a platform to gain recognition and fame. Almost 445,000 votes for local venues have been generated across more than 90 London neighbourhoods since 2014 – proof of the power of local.

Nick Buckland, Executive Chef & Owner, Yard Sale Pizza, the most loved restaurant in London in the Time Out Love London Awards 2016 commented on the great benefits that have come with winning the award: “The Time Out Love London Awards opened us up to a wider audience than our loyal locals, and also raised our profile within the industry. Our top tip to build an independent local business is to treat your staff and customers as part of the family. It’s important that all of your staff enjoy working for your company and that is reflected in your customer interactions. It’s also important to never compromise on quality even when growing, we are continuously looking to improve in everything we do.”

Caroline McGinn, Global Editor in Chief at Time Out, added: “Local knowledge is what Time Out is all about, but our editors can’t be everywhere at once. People who live in a city love and know their neighbourhood, and want to tell Time Out about it. Their recommendations help us capture great new and existing venues – usually cool indie spots – all over the city, and show them some love.

“Local businesses are the beating heart of a city’s neighbourhoods and these Awards are a fantastic way to show your love for all those hidden gems – we want to champion these independents and their entrepreneurial spirit and give them the spotlight they deserve.”

Londoners can vote between 6 March until 10 April 2018 at

Time Out Love London Award categories include London’s most loved:

  • Local restaurant
  • Local brunch spot
  • Local coffee place
  • Local late-night spot
  • Local place to drink in the sun
  • Local bar/pub
  • Local music venue
  • Local park
  • Local club/party
  • Local LGBTQ hangout
  • Local culture spot
  • Local landmark
  • Local shop


March 15th, 2018 | Latest News | 0 Comments

  • Britain’s No1 Classifieds Announces Biggest User-Experience Change in 18-Year History
  • Two Years Following First Ever Re-Brand, Customer Ratings Functionality to be Rolled Out

Gumtree has today announced that for the first time it will be offering users the opportunity to rate sellers, buyers and service providers that they transact with through the website and app. In the first phase of a major upgrade, Gumtree – which launched in 2000 and has been owned by eBay Inc since 2005 – will give customers the chance to provide feedback on their experiences of purchasing goods in the ‘For Sale’ category, by using an optional 5-star ratings system.

Gumtree is making the change to increase accountability and transparency between users on the site, and to instil greater buyer and seller confidence. The changes are highly requested in customer feedback, and follows a phase of extensive research and testing. Offering user ratings is the latest update in a set of sweeping changes to the Gumtree platform. Stemming from a full site rebrand in 2016, other recent changes include a relaunched ‘Jobs From Gumtree’ category, and an integration between Gumtree Motors and eBay Motors.

In initial beta testing of the new ratings functionality, conducted in February 2018 against a sample of approximately 4,000 users, 70% gave a full five-out-of-five star rating to the users they had met on Gumtree. The first phase of ratings is already available and visible to Gumtree users within the ‘For Sale’ category, and will soon be followed by the introduction of ratings across all other categories and the Gumtree app.

Matt Barham, General Manager, Gumtree UK says:

“At Gumtree, the team are continually looking for ways to develop and transform our site for the benefit of our thriving digital community. Introducing a ratings system is the next step in our evolution as we engage with our users and encourage them to have safe and fruitful experiences on the site. Gumtree is celebrating its 18th anniversary this month, and I am proud that as we did when we launched, we are continuing to challenge the traditional perception of the classifieds industry.”

The new experience will appear to users as follows:

Fig. 1 – Example of user showing a 4.5 star rating


 Fig. 2 – Example of breakdown


Tony Neate, CEO, Get Safe Online said: “Get Safe Online always supports any active steps from organisations that help to build a safer internet, so this is a really positive move by Gumtree, especially as they are the leading classifieds in the UK. We know that trust and safety between users is key to having a positive online experience. We also know that giving users the ability to rate whether or not they had a good experience will mean that Gumtree is a much harder place for fraudsters to operate.”

Professor Angela Sasse, Professor of Human-Centred Technology, University College London – who partnered with Gumtree on its ‘Psychology of Scamming’ report says: “Feedback ratings are a way of users in a community sharing their experiences. Users not only feel more secure when they are able to check other’s experiences, but there is also evidence that such feedback deters what is known as ‘opportunistic fraud’ – basically honest community members being tempted to behave dishonestly to make a quick buck because they think everybody else does.”

    2018 A1 Buyers Guide
    2018 A1 Buyers Guide right-hand Skyscraper
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