Family owned furniture retailer Barker and Stonehouse is preparing to re-open all its stores at the beginning of June, bolstered by increasing demand from customers and strong online sales during lockdown.
Following the Government’s further easing of lockdown restrictions, Barker and Stonehouse has been busy preparing its 11 stores for the welcome return of customers, with innovative safety measures installed to protect customers and staff.
James Barker, managing director of the Teesside-based retailer, said: “The gradual easing of lockdown measures is a relief for everyone in the retail industry and we’ve been delighted to be getting many customer enquiries asking us when we will re-open our stores.
“That’s why our team has been working around the clock over the last few weeks to build innovative new systems, such as a new online booking system for those who want one-to-one advice in a safe environment, and to ensure a comprehensive array of protective measures are in each of our stores.
“We now have sector-leading safety measures in place and look forward to safely opening our doors to customers again on 1st June.
This is just part of the story for Barker and Stonehouse’s re-opening. After many weeks of lockdown the retailer has devised a campaign, entitled Let’s Get Going Britain, to help get British furniture manufacturing back into production.
James Barker explained: “We have actively set out our stall to support our British manufacturers and help them get their teams off furlough. I am championing them because they are a great resource for our country and the quality of what they make is world-leading.
“We’ve done this by honouring previous orders and paying all our suppliers on time and making sure they are front and centre of our re-opening sales push.
“What this has resulted in however, is a mountain of stock in our warehouses, which are literally full to the brim.
“This stockpile will have to be sold at clear-out prices to make way for other orders that are still coming in.
“In return, now that we’re re-opening, these same manufacturers are giving us some absolutely amazing offers and delivery terms to help us quickly meet our customers’ needs and to get their order books full again.
“By looking out for each other everybody wins. When we re-open it will benefit everyone: we will be able to deliver very quickly; customers will get uniquely low prices for very high quality products; and our many talented furniture making suppliers can get back to work.”
This approach to business is not new for Barker and Stonehouse which is also a pioneer of the sustainable furniture movement.
The company co-founded a reforestation project in Indonesia 12 years ago, which has now planted more than one and a half million trees and provides education and employment for many farming communities. The company is now the country’s leading stockist of reclaimed furniture.