Portadown gift specialist The Bottom Drawer ‘bags’ extra space in new retail expansion

One of Portadown’s most successful independent retailers, The Bottom Drawer, has bagged a 35% extension to its retail space, making way for a growing product range after a strong rise in walk-in and online sales.

Wednesday, 4th August 2021, 6:00 am

The award-winning store, located at Magowan West Shopping Centre, has been reconfigured with a new layout to provide an extra 600 square feet of trading space to accommodate a new baby and children’s department.

Founded by sisters Frances and Rhonda Jardine in 2007, The Bottom Drawer has filled a successful niche in Portadown’s growing retail offer, providing locals and visitors alike with a unique one-stop shop for gifts, ladies and kids fashion, home accessories and furniture.

Despite the impact of Covid-19 restrictions on the retail sector, the popular life and style store – a multiple winner in the UK’s annual ‘The Greats’ Retail Awards – has enjoyed strong online local, national and international sales, supported by a social media following of more than 45,000.

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Business owners Frances and Rhonda Jardine

Frances explained: “We’re thrilled beyond measure with our new extension. Our new baby and kids’ department is everything we hoped it would be – light, bright and airy, somewhere that allows us to display our collection of quality children’s gifts and fashion to their best.”

Adding a range of new brands, some of which are supplied locally from County Armagh, Frances said the additional new space had also created an improved flow to the existing premises, enhancing displays and improving the customer experience and driving repeat visits and sales growth.

She continued: “Another aspect which is extremely important to us is the value the new space has added to The Bottom Drawer team. Our working environment is much nicer, more spacious and open, everyone is working with increased efficiency and productivity. Portadown has so much to offer, and we hope that we continue to be part of the town centre for many more years to come.”

Popular for big brand shopping names including Boots, Benneton and DV8, the agents behind Magowan West, Savills, welcomed the latest retail expansion.

Paul Wilson, Retail Director at Savills, which manages lettings at Magowan West, added: “We’re delighted for Frances, Rhonda and all the team at The Bottom Drawer who have shown real passion and determination to make this outstanding independent business a major success. Portadown remains a vibrant and bustling centre for retail and hospitality and we are currently experiencing very positive levels of interest in this exemplary scheme.

“This clearly shows that the town is attracting retail investors back after a challenging 18-month period. We look forward to continuing our drive to ensure Magowan West remains a major part in its future growth.”

Earlier this year, Magowan West Shopping Centre in Portadown marked a special delivery after The Post Office opened a new 1,500 sq. ft retail outlet following relocation from elsewhere in the town. The new Post Office branch is located at 23 West Street, part of Magowan West but also allowing easy access for users to and from the town centre and car parks and railway station.

Last December, Magowan West welcomed new restaurant AIR (Artisan Italian Restaurant) as part of a major investment by local couple Adam and Claire Carroll who opened their second Northern Ireland restaurant in Portadown.

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