As the RHS Chelsea Flower Show opens its doors for another year, small business insurer Simply Business has revealed an 88% surge in the number of independent garden centres, nurseries and flower stores across the UK.
Analysis of 2,550 policies taken out over a four-year period shows its florists up and down the country that are really blooming, with the number consistently up year-on-year.
Last year 895 policies were taken out, 88% higher than the 180 provided in 2014. The nationwide trend suggests that green-fingered city dwellers are on the up, with interest in the urban gardening movement gaining momentum, reckons Simply Business.
THE DEATH OF THE HIGH ST? NAH, IT’S JUST MOVED INDOORS
But is an interest in flowers really driving this small business insurance boom? Nope. It’s the relentless decline of the traditional UK High Street and the dramatic flight of more bespoke, artisan and adaptable small traders to pleasant, safer and affordable indoor retail spaces, which many garden centres and new offer across the country.
The reality is that people with money prefer to shop in areas free from spiceheads, drunks, mountain bike pot dealers, gangs of sinister looking men, charity chuggers waving jazz hands in your face etc – and then there’s the added bonus of not paying £5 to park for three hours. Garden centres like Wyevale, Notcutts, Cherry Lane, Dobbies, Blue Diamond and many others offer free parking, a safe environment that’s also immune to the weather conditions and a variety of old fashioned shops-within-shops concept.
It’s like Debenhams, but without the tedious women in white coats trying to spray you with some vile celebrity fragrance that costs £59 for two spoonfuls.
Out of all regions of the UK, London saw the largest growth says Simply Business, with a 71% increase in the number of independent florists, garden centres, and nurseries between 2014-2018. This was closely followed by East Anglia (66%), and South West England and South East England (both 65%).
Insurance Edge is predicting more segregated retail and leisure experiences in the near future, with the Haves shopping in cosy garden centres, antique mills and big retail malls, whilst the Have Nots will be purchasing their comedy haircuts, jeggings and vaping accessories from areas featuring BetFred, Subway and a smattering of cash-only car washes.
Yes brokers, we just did your underwriting risk ratio right there. You’re welcome.