Sidmouth businessman excited for opening of Honiton garden centre

PUBLISHED: 12:25 16 November 2018

James Trevett at Combe Garden Centre. Ref mhh 44 18TI 3960. Picture: Terry Ife

James Trevett at Combe Garden Centre. Ref mhh 44 18TI 3960. Picture: Terry Ife

Archant

A Sidmouth businessman is looking to bring his gardening experience to the masses as opening day approaches for his new garden centre.

Combe Garden Centre. Ref mhh 44 18TI 3949. Picture: Terry IfeCombe Garden Centre. Ref mhh 44 18TI 3949. Picture: Terry Ife

James Trevett will open Combe Garden Centre near Honiton on December 1, nearly three years after leaving his job as manager of Sidmouth Garden Centre.

The dad-of-one has been working with Combe Estate to bring the store to the town, which is estimated to have cost approximately £1.4million to build.

Now in the final stages of completion, James hopes the business will be an asset to Honiton and generating jobs in the local community.

Sidmothian James, who worked at Sidmouth Garden Centre for 15 years, said: “It feels very real. It has been in the distant future for a couple of years, all these pretty drawings of things that were going to happen.

James Trevett at Combe Garden Centre. Ref mhh 44 18TI 3969. Picture: Terry IfeJames Trevett at Combe Garden Centre. Ref mhh 44 18TI 3969. Picture: Terry Ife

“Garden Centres are not just somewhere you go to buy plants, people plan to meet there, and in the past we did fundraising events, we want to enforce that community feeling so it becomes part of the community and I hope it does.”

The proposed centre will offer 1,044 sqm of retail space, covered and open sales areas and 43 parking spaces – including four for disabled customers.

The family-run Combe Estate is made up of nearly 5,000 acres of woodland and farm land and approached James about the site at the former Meadow View Nursery in Gittisham.

James said: “They were looking to do something different. They wanted to invest in something that is going to generate more jobs. It’s important that money is being reinvested in the area and in the town. We want to be an asset to Honiton.”

In the run up to opening day, staff have been busy stocking shelves as well as the finishing touches to the car park.

The garden centre will employ seven full and seven part time members of staff and James is setting the bar high, with intentions to enter into the garden retail awards within the first year of opening.

James said: “There will be faces that people will recognise that have come across to what we achieved back in Sidmouth.

“We cannot promise to be everything for everyone but we will do our very best and I hope to see old faces.”

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