An independent travel agency in Staffordshire is looking excitedly to the future after switching to larger, freshly refurbished shop.
Market Place Travel has moved its team to a nearby new location within its hometown of Burton-upon-Trent.
Launched by co-owners Mark Lomas and Karen Brown in July 2018, the agency seized an opportunity to upsize to a two-storey corner property in March, just as the UK went into coronavirus lockdown.
Lomas said the past seven months had been spent designing and refurbishing the new space, with the Market Place team opening the doors of their new shop to customers on Saturday (31 October).
“When the space became available we just jumped at the chance and then as soon as we’d secured it, the country went into lockdown,” he said.
“Then, just as we opened up the new store on Saturday, the news came out that we were going back into lockdown – so you just couldn’t make it up really.”
Lomas said the new location was twice the size of Market Place’s previous shop and featured an upstairs area which is due to be turned into a VIP customer area.
The move already appears to be paying dividends – as the agency managed to secure £35,000 worth of business during its opening event at the weekend.
“It’s a brave decision to do something like this at a time like this – I suppose you’d say it’s sheer genius or sheer madness,” Lomas added.
“We’ve had so many customers and locals popping in to check how we’re doing over the last few months and assuring us they’ll book again when the time is right.
“So we’re very confident and excited for the future and know that once the world has gone back to normal we’ll be able to push on with things.”