Thursday, November 20, 2014

News: La Bella Lingerie opens on Rotherham High Street

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La Bella Lingerie, the latest retailer to open on Rotherham's rejuvenated High Street, shows just how important it is to get the right support.

Established by Karen Carr, a former teacher for over 20 years, the independent lingerie boutique offers a wide range of brands of tasteful lingerie, including bras, underwear, briefs and loungewear in all sizes.

To fulfil her long-term dream, Karen has taken advantage of a "Pop-up Shop" initiative, one of a number from the Council that has attracted a range of independent, niche businesses into Rotherham town centre.

Pop-up Shops have become increasingly popular across the country as a means of offering retail space to new start businesses looking to try out their markets, gain valuable experience to shape their business model and to make a sound decision regarding their long term viability before potentially investing significantly in set-up costs and committing to a long term lease agreement.

The scheme is being funded by central Government as part of a grant received by Rotherham Council and follows the announcement in 2012 that Rotherham was successful in becoming a "Portas Pilot" town.

Karen Carr, owner of La Bella Lingerie, said: "The Pop-up Shop concept has given me a fantastic opportunity to showcase my dream business.

"Right from the start of the process, Rotherham Council's Town Centre team recognised my enthusiasm for this project, helping me along the way with support and advice.

"The opportunity was so good, that I gave up my career as a teacher to pursue my dream of running my own shop.

"I'm fully trained in bra fitting and the shop will carry a wide range of sizes, right up to K cup. We will also have post-operation bras available and sportswear.

"We offer a "wishlist" service, making whatever you want, and also gift vouchers which are perfect for Christmas! It really is all about you at La Bella Lingerie."

Cabinet Member for Business Growth and Regeneration, Councillor Dominic Beck, added: "La Bella Lingerie certainly does represent a beautiful new start for this determined entrepreneur.

"It's a great example of the fact that not only does Rotherham town centre continue to grow and diversify, but also that people are willing to start their dream businesses with us."

The Council's Town Centre Team first offered a prime retail unit in the refurbished Imperial Buildings on flexible and attractive lease terms to help businesses get up and running. Opened in 2013, Vintage Dolls, offering vintage clothing and furniture, is still going strong after being initially offered a three month licence for the unit. Rental discounts, help with fitting out and free business support & retail training form part of the package available.

Back on the High Street, the Makers' Emporium operates as a shared retail space model which enables new retailers "test trading" space, for up to a year. Funded by the High Street Renewal Award and delivered in partnership between the Council, The Source and Rotherham Youth Enterprise, The Makers' Emporium focuses on providing locally designed and hand crafted items with an array of items available to suit all tastes and budgets.

The Pop-up Shop initiative aims to bridge the gap for retailers between the shared retail space and a permanent fixed term lease on their own premises.

La Bella Lingerie Facebook page
Rotherham Town Centre website

Images: La Bella Lingerie

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