Greetings Today magazine, giving you the bigger picture

Retas winners party hard

Best greetings retailers celebrate 2019 trophies in colourful style

 

CELEBRATIONS were in order for the 2019 Retas winners on Wednesday, July 10, as those crowned the best greetings retailers for the year partied hard.

And there was plenty of colour as the presentation at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel in keeping with the Frida Fiesta theme after Mexican artist Frida Kahlo.
“We freaking won it!” was the triumphant cry from Carl Dunne at Cards & Gifts Sheffield having lifted the Best Newcomer North trophy with partner Oliver Guise-Smith, “thank you so much to each and every one of our invaluable customers – we couldn’t have done it without your support and feedback.”
And Rachel and Paul Roberts, of Mooch in Towcester, Olney and Northampton, were crowned Best Non-Specialist Independent Retailer South and said: “The little trip to that there London turned out nice – we picked up an award for the awesome selection of greetings cards in Mooch.”
Anne Barber may have been struggling with an injury but winning Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer for Wales & The Midlands helped numb the pain: “It was a slow walk up to the stage, taking it easy with my broken foot, and shaking like a leaf at the same time. It was all a big shock and pretty emotional too. I can't tell you how happy I feel for everyone at the shop – we are a winning team.”
The Best Greeting Card Retailer Initiative went to Cardies in Stevenage, Herts, for their street art programme and owner Jo Sorrell said: “We’ve only gone and won another Reta – absolutely lost for words which doesn’t happen too often.
“This one is even more super special because we won it with all your help! A really extra special huge thank you to you all for joining in with our bonkers ideas. What a great community we have.”
And having been crowned Greeting Card Retail Employee Of The Year, Mandy Baker made sure her trophy went straight into the window at Celebrations in Aylsham, Norfolk, when she got back into work yesterday morning.
Mandy and Carl were among the greetings folk who had pictures taken with former boxing champ Chris Eubank who happened to be passing when the celebrations moved on to nearby The Market Tavern pub after the main event finished.
And that was where publisher Wendy Jones-Blackett and Glick’s Becky Dobson were able to join the fun after the two category sponsors missed the main event because they were stuck on a train for hours when it caused damage to cables, closing the East Coast main line for much of the day.
Hosted by comedian Pippa Evans, who delighted the 400-plus audience with a poem about greetings card retailing, the event had been moved from The Dorchester in protest at the anti-human rights laws passed by owner the Sultan of Brunei and the charity raffle proceeds of more than £4,000 from the day are being split between Amnesty International and the licensing industry charity The Light Fund.
With the 30-strong Blue Diamond Garden Centres group taking the overall Best Greeting Card Retailer award, the full list of winners is below.


The Retas 2019 Winners

Greeting Card Retail Employee Of The Year
Mandy Baker, manager, Celebrations, Aylsham

Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer – London (inside the M25)
Medici Gallery, South Kensington

Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer – Home Counties
Red Card, Petworth

Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer – East Anglia
Sincerely Yours, Shenfield

Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer – South West
Island Greetings, two stores in St Helier

Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer – Wales & the Midlands
In Heaven At Home, Market Harborough

Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer – North & Northern Ireland
Baileys Cards & Gifts, Southport & Crosby

Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer – Scotland
Bluestone Designs, Largs, Glasgow, Lochgilphead and Barrhead

Best Greeting Card Retailer Newcomer or New Branch – South
Objectables, Folkestone

Best Greeting Card Retailer Newcomer or New Branch – North
Cards & Gifts, Sheffield

Best Independent Bookstore Retailer of Greeting Cards
Blandfords, Broadway, Hereford and Ledbury

Best Non-Specialist Independent Retailer of Greeting Cards – North
Boroughbridge Post Office, Boroughbridge

Best Non-Specialist Independent Retailer of Greeting Cards – South
Mooch, Olney, Towcester, & two stores in Northampton

Best Greeting Card Small Multiple (4-20 stores)
Zo & Co – four stores in Greater Manchester & Cheshire

Best Department Store Retailer of Greeting Cards
John Lewis, Oxford St

Best Supermarket Retailer of Greeting Cards
Sainsbury’s

Best Non-Specialist Multiple Retailer of Greeting Cards (4+ stores)
Utility, 4 stores, Liverpool & Manchester

Best Specialist Multiple Retailer of Greeting Cards (20+ stores)
Cardzone Group – 130 stores

Best Garden Centre Retailer of Greeting Cards
Blue Diamond Group, 30 garden centres

Best Greeting Card Retailer Initiative for a specific project or initiative undertaken by a retailer to promote card sales
Cardies, Stevenage – community street art programme

Best Greeting Card Service-Based Wholesaler
Budget Greeting Cards, eight branches UK & Eire

Greeting Card Retailer of the Year
Blue Diamond Garden Centres


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