MSC secures permission for opening canopy at Dunbar Garden Centre

Dunbar Garden Centre has been given the green light to construct a new opening roof canopy, an addition that owners are confident will increase turnover and profit opportunities at the site while protecting its plant sales area.

The centre contacted industry specialists Malcolm Scott Consultants seeking a solution to issues with the prevailing wind at the site, which was causing damage to plants located in the open sales area.

Since opening in 2013, the centre has become well-established, driven by a strong plant focus and community feel, but without a canopy to protect the plants from wind damage, frost and snow, the Spott Road site was reporting double the plant losses of another centre within the group.

In response to the concerns, Chris Primett of Malcolm Scott Consultants designed and gained planning permission for a new covered canopy. He explained: “To address the problem, it was proposed that we erect a large plant canopy with an opening roof over the plant sales area.

“When the weather is inclement the roof can be closed for full protection, but during good weather it will remain open.  The proposed canopy covers the existing plant display area, supporting both plant care and year-round shopping.

 “We envisage that the canopy could keep customers on site longer during poor weather conditions, thereby creating a more enjoyable shopping experience and creating the potential for the business to increase its average transaction value,” he added.

“As business consultants we’ve identified many areas for businesses to develop in the coming years, but this project was particularly pleasing to be involved in. Not only are Nick Crabbie and his team fantastic to work with, but delivering something of this nature to help the heartbeat of a garden centre, in the form of its plant department, was really rewarding,” he said.

The canopy also has additional environmental benefits where the roof water will be collected in a water tank and could be recycled for irrigating plants, whereas the original surface water was not recycled.

Nick Crabbie, of Dunbar, said: “The new opening roof Rovero not only creates a better environment for customers and staff, but the plants are easier to maintain.

“Our aim is to extend the season and provide a wider range of plants. There is also the added benefit of being able to hold events such as a Christmas Market and provide gardening demonstrations throughout the year, which we plan to explore in the coming months.”

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