A young student who left her native China to study at Sunderland University, has thanked her loyal customer base for supporting her business supplying protective gloves, tools, and personal protective equipment (PPE) to industry during the pandemic.

Wenyan Sharp fell in love with the North East during her University years and began a busy career including high profile positions with Corus Group (British Steel) and Sunderland University as well as time running her own Chinese restaurant.

In 2015 she formed Galaxy Industrial Supplies and opened her premises on Cramlington’s South Nelson Industrial Estate two years ago to supply Personal Protective Equipment and tools to industries. Importing from her family’s glove factory in China, the business maintained steady growth until lockdown occurred and like many similar businesses her business model had to radically change.

“Up until COVID, we sold our PPE and hand tools almost exclusively to wholesalers and distributors but with high street shops closing we had to rethink the way we worked. Crucially for us, what we supplied was in big demand due to the pandemic and we worked hard to ensure that everyone who needed our PPE supplies got them.

“Our customer base suddenly went online, and we found ourselves working directly with small businesses and individuals rather than through wholesalers and distributors. These people kept us busy, and their loyalty was amazing. I’m truly grateful for everyone who used us to help protect them during a very dark period in everyone’s life.”

Wenyan found that as well as gloves, her biggest sellers were Alcohol Disinfectant Wipes and Hand Sanitizer and as a thank you to her local community she is arranging to provide these items free of charge to good causes in South East Northumberland. Her first batch will go to music fans attending the “Blyth Live” free festival run by Blyth Town Council on Saturday 18th June.

Mel Jackson who organises the event was delighted at Wenyan’s kind offer.

“We will have upwards of 16,000 people coming to see our headline act Boyzlife and it is important that everyone feels safe at the event. The fact that many people will receive a sanitizer is a nice touch from a local business that is built on keeping people safe.”

Wenyan added, “My daughter Rebecca is 11 years old and helps me with the business in her spare time, I’m sure like me, she will love the music, and she will also help me to distribute the sanitizer to those attending. It will be a great day for her to contribute to the community.

“Our business is all about protecting people with the products that we supply. The “Blyth Live” Festival is a great way for us to show our appreciation to the people who bought our products and any other good causes that may need free small quantities of sanitizer can get in touch with me by email info@gisupplies.co.uk, “said Wenyan.

Photo 1 shows L to R Mel Jackson of Blyth Town Council, Rebecca Sharp, Wenyan Sharp and Julie Summers of Blyth Town Council (The Bigger Picture Agency)