Bakers & Larners is a completely family owned business and has been in the family since 1770. The store is known as the ‘Harrods of Holt’ or ‘Norfolk’s Fortnum & Mason’. As well as a food hall, they have an extensive wine department and cellars, a department store, four builders’ merchant branches and two Budgens supermarkets so they are quite diverse in their offerings. As winners of the 2019 Food Hall of the Year and East Anglia Region in the Farm Shop & Deli Awards, we spoke to acting managing director, Jane Gurney-Read, to discover how winning has helped the business.
What makes your shop special or different to others?
We are a unique store having been run by the same family for nearly 250 years. We offer a wide variety of local products and on many occasions, we have been the first choice for many suppliers starting out and have helped launch a number of local businesses.
How did your staff feel when they heard you were a Farm Shop & Deli Award winner?
All the staff were delighted. To win such a prestigious award on the back of the launch of our updated food hall was a great achievement.
Which three words would you use to describe your shop?
Individual, quirky and friendly.
Retailers like you are often at the heart of communities, tell us about some of the things you do to support your local community.
We support the Holt Festival, a number of local sports clubs and each year we select a chosen local charity and raise money in store to support them. We also support small local good causes with vouchers and raffle prizes. The business is also a firm believer in supporting our armed forces and each year we support the Royal Marines Norfolk Branch and the Army Benevolent Fund. We employ 275 staff with over 70% living within a 10-mile radius of where we are based as well as spending over £500,000 with local suppliers.
What did your customers think to the news about your award win?
Our customers feel part of the Bakers & Larners family and were delighted that we had been recognised.
How did you celebrate winning the award?
There were glasses of champagne all round.
Tell us about some of the PR opportunities this award has generated for you.
We have been able to showcase our award on any adverts and brochures we produce and we’ve also advised our customers of the win via our website and social media.
What does winning awards like this mean to you?
It is an amazing result. We have won a number of national and regional awards in the past across all divisions of the group but the Food Hall is the area for which we are best known. It shows that we have the right combination of products and helpful, knowledgeable staff.
What do you love most about working in this industry?
Variety with the chance to meet new people and help to launch new local suppliers.
Have you got any projects you are working on or plans for development you would like to share?
Next year we have a number of plans in the pipeline to celebrate our 250th anniversary – watch this space!
Why should retailers enter the Farm Shop & Deli Awards 2020?
To be part of this award and to get to the final is an achievement as it shows that the customers who nominated you appreciate your staff and the choice of products you have available.
Interested in entering?
Entries close Friday 20th September so click on the image below to commnence your entry: