Vegan wellness shop now open in Chichester thanks to council's Pop-Up Shop initiative
A vegan wellness shop which hopes to help people buy more sustainably sourced and produced products has opened in Crane Street, Chichester. The shop has opened thanks to Chichester District Council's ongoing Pop-Up Shop initiative.
The Home Spa previously had a shop in Selsey and has a website and will be welcoming customers in Crane Street until September. The business is run by Naomi Harris who started making self-care products for herself at home in 2021 as a hobby alongside raising her children.
The Pop-Up Shop initiative is providing Naomi and her business the opportunity to experience a busier retail environment and gain more high street exposure.
Launched to help support small and start-up businesses in the district, the scheme makes use of vacant properties owned by the council and provides them as affordable temporary premises. This allows smaller businesses to have the opportunity to trial business concepts and trade in the city centre without the commitment of a longer-term lease.
"I started The Home Spa simply to give myself a hobby while looking after my two young children and to keep busy while we were facing more lockdowns," says Naomi. "Over the following months I gifted many of my creations to family and friends, with no intention of selling them. But they absolutely loved them, and soon they were so in demand I thought there might be something more to this than a hobby.
"Even though we had plenty of interest in Selsey, we also have many customers who travel from Chichester to come and see us so this should be a great opportunity for the business to get more exposure, recognition, and experience in a busier high street."
Naomi adds: "My partner is a builder, so this has really helped us make the space our own. I've always been a creative person, so new spaces and opportunities have always excited me. Since opening, we've also been able to use the shop to trial out some new products, such as bubble baths and shower steamers."
As well providing the opportunity to gain valuable experience, the Pop-Up Shop initiative also offers small businesses an idea of what is needed to grow.
Naomi says: "This project will also be incredibly helpful in giving us an insight into how to effectively operate on a mainstream high street. From this we would hope to understand the next steps and where the opportunities will be for us to grow within the business."
Councillor Harsha Desai, Cabinet Member for Growth and Place at Chichester District Council says: "Our Pop-Up Shop scheme was developed by our Economic Development Team to help give small and start-up enterprises the opportunity to gain high street exposure by providing affordable temporary premises for them to rent for short periods."
"We are delighted to see entrepreneurs and designers from the local area take the reins in our pop-up shops for the summer months. I hope that they find the experience productive, and it provides them the opportunity to develop their businesses for the future."
Since launching, the council's pop-up scheme has welcomed a variety of local businesses including a vintage clothing retailer, a digital printing firm, an ice cream business, a computing company, and a flooring business.
If people want to find out more about the council's pop-up shop initiative, they can visit our Business Advice and Support page.
And people can find out more about The Home Spa by visiting The Home Spa's website.
Date of Release: 7 July 2023