To celebrate Brothers & Sisters reaching the grand old age of one, our series ‘We Are One’ will tell the story of some of the independents we’ve watched grow over the last 12 months. Class of 2020, we salute you!
Old Town General Store in Stockport is one of the most clicked shops on Brothers & Sisters. A lifestyle store, selling a perfectly curated selection of mens and ladies fashion, homewares, gifts and beauty products, the shop opened at the end of October 2020, and was trading for six days before the second national lockdown.
In this week’s blog, the store owner Tony tells us about Old Town General Store’s first year…
Opening a shop when we were knee-deep in the pandemic, remind us how the shop came about please Tony!?
I’ve always worked for large retailers including Flannels, Harvey Nichols and Selfridges. Like many others, I became a victim of COVID and was made redundant in July 2020. I was applying for jobs and having good responses but nothing felt right and I started to think about opening my own store. It’s always been a dream to open my own shop.
One year on, what’s been the biggest challenge?
The lockdown in November was a week after I’d opened the shop, and overall we ended up being closed for 21 weeks out of 26 in the first 6 months. As a new store, having to totally pivot to being an online operation was a huge challenge and totally went against my business plan!
Tell us about the best bits of the last year?
The customer support has been brilliant, so many people have been really wonderful in shopping local, spreading the name of the shop amongst friends and buying online during lockdowns! I’m really humbled and thankful for everyone who has supported the shop over the last year.
What’s next for OTGS?
I’m most excited about continuing to build our brand offering, introducing Stockport to labels like Fracap and April Meets October, and working with local folk in bringing great stuff to Stockport. I’m also very excited about all the progress Stockport has made – long may it continue!
And of course there’s 20% off everything in the shop and online until midnight on Monday November 29th!
Find Tony and the latest fashion brands, lifestyle inspo and gifts at Old Town General Store, 24 Lower Hillgate, Stockport Old Town, SK11JE or shop online anytime on the website, delivery is free on all orders over £75.