The owners of a Norton based gift shop reflect on a first year of trading and praise the help and support they have received

Rose-May The Handmade Shop based in Norton, Malton in Ryedale and owned by Robert and Tracey Wilmot, is looking forward to celebrating its first birthday this month. Reflecting on their first year, they give high praise to the enterprise help and support that they received and credit it with providing them with the clarity that they needed to focus on the future of their business.

Robert and Tracey’s gift shop specialises in selling handmade soap and other unique handmade products made by talented crafters in the UK. During their first year, just as their lines of stock have evolved, so have their business ideas. However, at times Robert and Tracey felt overwhelmed by the number of options available as they considered which path they wanted their business to take. After making contact with Yorkshire Coast Enterprise (YCE) as part of the Start & Grow programme, they received many hours of support from Business Advisor Jennifer Crowther. Guided by Jennifer, they were successfully awarded a £10,000 Virgin Start-Up Loan. Their business has also featured as Start Up of the Week on the Virgin Start-Up blog.

Tracey feels very passionate about the importance of enterprise support. She commented, “We received help six months after opening the shop when we realised that we had gone as far as we could on our own. We knew what we wanted to do, but couldn’t work out the best way of getting there. Having an expert come in, with a fresh pair of eyes was massively helpful. We now have a clear path for our business and feel confident in our decisions. I don’t think we’d be where we are now without that support.”

The future of Rose-May The Handmade Shop looks very positive. Robert is continuing to work with YCE and a Virgin mentor as they plan the shop’s future growth, while Tracey is busy creating a new range of handmade teddy bears. Thanks to the enterprise support they received, they were able to fine tune their business model and confidently find a clear path for its future.
Yorkshire Coast Enterprise works with a range of local start-up businesses as part of the national Start & Grow programme delivered in this area and would be delighted to hear from others looking to start up in business to see if they meet the criteria of the programme.


Notes for Editors and contact details

1. Rose-May The Handmade Shop is based in Norton, Malton in Ryedale, North Yorkshire. It opened in June 2015. Robert and Tracey Wilmot, Tel: 01653 696197
2. Yorkshire Coast Enterprise (YCE) are based in Scarborough, North Yorkshire. Jennifer Crowther, Business Adviser, Tel: 01723 588063.

About Start & Grow

Start & Grow is a national programme run by Cavendish Enterprise and funded by the Regional Growth Fund that provides a range of pre and post start support to individuals across England looking to start a business. The programme is available to those looking to start a business which expects to employ people from its early stages and where start-up financing is required to get the venture off the ground.

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National Enterprise Network is the only membership body in England representing those working in the enterprise support sector. We believe our members are crucial to Britain’s economic success. Our role is to support their work, promote the results they achieve, and connect them with opportunities for even greater success. NEN membership is traditionally, but not exclusively, made up of not-for-profit enterprise support organisations providing independent and impartial advice, training and mentoring to new and emerging businesses. The organisation represents a variety of enterprise support organisations; including enterprise agencies, Chambers of Commerce, local authorities and other specialist providers.