On 7th February 2014, exactly one year ago today, I nervously walked into my solicitor’s office and signed the lease on a great little shop on the Market Square in Ely bringing Allgoods of Ely into a reality. After months of research and preparation, I handed in my notice, began putting all the plans into place and we opened the doors to the delicatessen on Sunday 23rd March. And it seems so strange, standing here now surrounded by shelving and fridges full of stock, that at the beginning of 2014, this place only existed only in my mind.
What a year we’ve had and the steepest of learning curves too. Never having run a company or a shop before, we had to get to grips with the accounts, environmental health, marketing, licensing and a whole host of other things quickly. But during that time, we’ve found some great suppliers and stocked some gorgeous products, as well as meeting so many lovely customers and making new friends along the way. We’ve also been entered in the Farm Shop and Deli Awards and I’ve judged at the Great Taste Awards. We have been overwhelmed by the support we’ve received and we’re very grateful!
The start of 2015 brings fresh challenges and opportunities for us. The first challenge is creating our website and I hope you like it so far. We’ll be adding much more content to it over the weeks and months and I’ll be writing regular blog posts too. We’re also planning to recruit in the next few months too and finding the right staff to join our deli family will be important.
We’ll be inviting many of our producers into the deli over the course of 2015 for supplier days where you’ll be able to meet them, sample their wares, discuss recipes idea and find out about new products. We’re also planning regular cheese and wine tasting evenings and promotions within the deli (there’s our official first birthday in March to start off with!).
We have lots of other plans too including seating inside at some point. Lee’s plan includes “Phase 37 – global domination” although I suspect that may be a way off yet!