Home fragrance and gift retailer Collectables has opened a new North East store – bucking the trend for high street closures amid the coronavirus pandemic.
At a time when many other well-known high street names are under pressure with the ongoing Covid-19 crisis pushing consumers increasingly towards online shopping, Collectables has expanded its bricks and mortar presence with the opening of its latest store in the heart of one of Newcastle’s prime city centre shopping locations.
The premises in Monument Mall on Blackett Street is Collectables ninth high street store – with the firm’s managing director, David Lewis, confident the outlet will flourish despite the ongoing challenges of coronavirus restrictions.
He said: “It’s been a hard year for retailers, but thanks to good sales online and in stores, and the benefit of the temporary business rates relief for businesses, we have increased our staff headcount in 2020.
“We are confident enough to open a new store in a prime city centre location, and we are growing our online outlets thanks to our focus on ranges which are very much at the forefront of people’s minds – home fragrance and accessories, comfort and wellbeing.
“People are spending more time than ever at home, and our products make the home a much more attractive and comfortable place to be.”
Collectables was founded in 1985 by Mr Lewis’ father, Philip, and has grown to be one of the North East’s best-known high street brands.
Specialising in home fragrance, comfort and wellbeing, gifts and home accessories, Collectables currently employs 60 people across its stores in Sunderland, Cramlington, Washington, the Metrocentre, Darlington, Middlesbrough, Castleford near Leeds, and now Newcastle.
It also sells online and through stores on Amazon and Facebook.
The Monument Mall outlet employs seven staff and occupies an historic site alongside high-profile brands including Reiss, Boss, Fat Face, White Company and Kiehl’s.
Mr Lewis said: “Our investment in this high-profile location emphasises our continuing commitment to the high street, even in the current climate.
“It is a beautiful showcase for our unique collections, which range from the latest home fragrance and homewares to unusual and inspiring gifts, jewellery and accessories. It’s a lovely site in a superb position – an historic, stylish building which showcases our range beautifully.”