North East Connected

Northallerton store named UK’s best

The family-run business on Yafforth Road won the Excellence in Retail Display for their display of products for the kitchen, table and home, after reaching the finals of the Excellence in Housewares Awards 2016.

The Excellence in Housewares Awards, now in its 17th year, recognise and reward the UK’s top housewares retailers, and more than 400 retailers and suppliers attended the event at the London Lancaster.

The success for Barkers Home comes only seven months after the store underwent a major £3.5million redevelopment – the biggest investment by Barkers, who also have the eponymous department store on Northallerton High Street.

Legendary chef Ken Hom was star guest at Barkers Home recently when he held a cooking demonstration in the Cook, Wine and Dine section.

Julie Poynton, Homewares buyer for the Cook, Wine and Dine section, said: “The Cook, Wine and Dine department was a brand new section in Barkers Home, so to win this award after such a short time is amazing.

“We have worked so hard to create both an enjoyable shopping experience for our customers and a unique lifestyle store that Northallerton can be proud of.

“Gaining UK-wide recognition for what we do is icing on the cake.”

Barkers Home was expanded by 20,000 square feet to 60,000 square feet – almost an acre-and-a-half – to create a section for contemporary furniture, gifts, bigger linens department, new cook, wine and dine section, while there was also a revamp of the first-floor bedroom furniture and soft furnishings section.

Barkers Home employs 60 staff, after the expansion created an extra 15 full and part-time jobs.

It is not the first time the new-look store has been shortlisted for major awards.

They finished third in the Association of Independent Stores Awards – a national award voted for by suppliers on how Barkers operates behind the scenes and in store, including the way they buy and select items, send out orders, display goods and the skill and knowledge of sales staff.

Following the redevelopment in March, they won in the commercial building category at the North and East Yorkshire Building Excellence Awards.

Barkers Home director Ian Barker said: “We are delighted to have been recognised as an outstanding store, and it is testament to the hard work of all our staff.

“Our triumph at the Excellence in Housewares Awards caps a remarkable year for Barkers Home, which has been transformed into a modern, vibrant lifestyle store.”

The Excellence in Housewares Awards are organised by Progressive Housewares magazine, in conjunction with the Cookshop and Housewares Association. The Awards recognise and reward the UK’s top housewares retailers, as well as the best new housewares products.

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