Garden centres last year saw the biggest rise in sales in less traditional areas of trade according to the GCA’s Barometer of Trade (BoT) results.
Shoppers kitted out their gardens with furniture and enjoyed plenty of good weather barbecuing leading to a 22.06% rise in sales compared to the year 2013.
Will Armitage, Chairman of the Garden Centre Association, explained: ?It was recently announced that 2014 was the mildest year on record, which was great news for our member garden centres. We saw good sales of outdoor plants, 8.87% up on 2013 and garden sundries at 8.92% up on last year. The better weather really helped and the year to date figure only decreased as autumn/winter drew closer.
?It was sales of furniture and barbecues which really soared, with a year to date rise of 22.06%.
?Gardens are great spaces for entertaining and can be an extension of the house so when good weather arrives it?s not surprising that people want to spend more time in them.
?Christmas sales also saw a significant leap, up 10.55% compared to 2013.?
Other good performers during the year were Food Hall/Farm shop with a year to date change of 6.80%, clothing at 8.01% and catering at 8.70%.
Overall sales figures for member garden centres were up 8.87%.
Will added: ?I?d like to congratulate all our members on their adaptability, flexibility and sheer hard work in 2014 and I?d like to wish everyone all the best for 2015.?
The GCA BoT reports are compiled using actual sales figures and provide an up-to-date trading position statement. They are made available mid-month following the end of the prior month after all member garden centres have submitted their results.?The reports allow members to compare their trading positions with other centres.