Not only was the weather hot at the Harrogate Home & Gift exhibition last week, so too was the gossip, with rumours escalating about fears that next year’s show was under question as the grounds of the Majestic Hotel, which has recently been sold to Hilton hotel group would not be available for the Design Points and the Greetings and Stationery Halls.
Categorically quashing the rumours, Neil Gaisford, managing director of Clarion Retail, which owns and organises Harrogate Home and Gift confirmed to PG Buzz that the show is most definitely staying put. When asked to confirm that the Design Point and Greetings and Stationery marquees will be in the same location at the next year’s show, Neil emphatically replied: “YESSSSS!! And just to be really clear…next year, and the year after that…and the year after that… and the year after that…and the year after that…and the year after that…and the year after that…!”
What sparked the rumours is that from 2019 the Majestic Hotel will become a DoubleTree by Hilton, and will undergo a £15 million refurbishment programme transform its interior spaces.
“Home & Gift is a very special event, loved by many for its creative suppliers on show, unique setting and festival atmosphere. With the exciting upgrades taking place across the show and in particular The Majestic hotel becoming a Hilton DoubleTree, with whom we have a long term agreement, the show will continue to thrive and we look forward to another 50 years in its natural home of Harrogate,” added Neil.
But it was not just rumours that were flying high at the Home and Gift show last week. The GCA joined with the Clarion Retail team to ‘fly the flag’ for Thinking of You Week (which takes place September 24-30) with the first ever wall of happiness in the buyers’ lounge. GCA members who were exhibiting at the show were invited to submit up to five cards which they thought best embodied the spirit of Thinking of You Week (non-seasonal and non-birthday cards). These were affixed to the wall, labelled with their company name and stand number at the show.
“The reaction to our first ever Thinking of You Week ‘wall of happiness’ in the buyers’ lounge was fantastic, with many member exhibitors saying that retailers had come to their stands as a result of seeing their cards on the wall,” says GCA ceo Sharon Little. “We also had a giant Thinking of You Week sign directing buyers to DP5, the Greetings and Stationery Gallery.”
The GCA also had flyers in the buyers’ lounge promoting Thinking of You Week. Flyers and the PoS toolkit are now available to download from the Thinking of You Week website (thinkingofyouweek.cards).
Top: Harrogate Home and Gift is settled in its Harrogate location.