The Farmhouse Living Shop prepares to open near York

Lisa Fletcher is preparing to open The Farmhouse Living Shop in the former Original Factory Shop on the A64, north of the city, in February.

The former discount store is currently being transformed into a showroom, ready to sell hot tubs ranging in price from £5,000 to £30,000.

Plans are also taking shape to expand the product range in the future, to include items and accessories for outdoor living such as gardening gloves, plant pots and candles.

To whet potential customers’ appetites in the meantime, Lisa has created a pop-up shop on site to showcase what is to come.

“We are trying to get all the work done. It takes more time than you would think, with getting materials. But I am really excited about it,” she said.

Lisa, who lives in Hunmanby, North Yorkshire, said she kept seeing the A64 site while it was on the market as she drove past and was tempted by the opportunity.

“It was on the market for quite a long time. I kept going past it and getting a niggling feeling. There was a lot of toeing and froing [with the landlord] and then it just happened.”

With previous experience of running a hot tub business in Scarborough, Lisa said: “Because I understand that business I have started with hot tubs here. That will develop into what I want it to become.”

During the Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns, hot tubs were in demand in the UK.

“I could not get stock, said Lisa. “We just couldn’t get the products into the country. Even now the market is huge.”

She said commercial sales, in particular, had grown, with holiday parks making up about 80 per cent of her previous trade.

“In February when we open the main thing will be hot tubs but I am going to have a very small set-up where it is showing what is to come.

“It is not just a hot tub shop. It will be a lifestyle shop where everything will be very beautiful. It will be very seasonal and decorative.”

Lisa said she was not nervous about launching a new business following the challenges of the pandemic.

“I am excited to see how it is going to develop and to see new customers come through the door. I know the amount of work I put into it is what I will get out of it.”

The Farmhouse Living Shop will have on a small team of staff initially which Lisa said would grow with the business.

She said her brother Jamie Fletcher had been a great support, and was responsible for the day-to-day running of the operation as manager.

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