July 2018 was a sparkling month for garden centre group Blue Diamond. The month started with Silver-Gilt Medals for Fryers Roses at RHS Hampton Court and Tatton Park Flower Shows, then they secured the acquisition of eight garden centres from Wyevale Garden Centres and at the end of the month their East Bridgford centre won seven awards in the GCA Midlands Region including Midlands Garden Centre of the Year.
GTN Xtra caught up with the Blue Diamond senior team on Friday as they completed a week long tour of all eight centres bought from Wyevale for around £36m. The transition to Blue Diamond takes place on Friday 17th August, so this was the start of the integration process for Wyevale staff and the Blue Diamond teams who have to get tills and their own stock systems in place within the next two weeks.
Managing Director, Alan Roper, met with staff at the centres and where the sites are leasehold the landlords too. Wyevale Garden Centres central and regional management staff also joined the tour to help with the smooth transition of the businesses.
"We've now got plans already drawn up for each of the centres as to how we will use the space and all of my "head office" team have been a part of that process," Alan told GTN Xtra. "The first centre to be upgraded to our Redfields/East Bridgford model will be Bicester Avenue."