Building society helps florist put down roots

Building society helps florist put down roots

Recent visitors to the Darlington Building Society in Northallerton might have noticed a new addition to the High Street branch in the form of an in-branch florist.

The Wallflower Floral Artist, which is owned and run by 32 year-old Lisa Sopekan, held a special pop-up shop at the branch from which she sold her signature bouquets and single flowers  customers.

As part of its 160th anniversary celebrations Darlington Building Society has pledged to use its resources to help local business and organisations. One of the ways it is doing this is by sharing spaces in its 10 branches that can be used for a limited amount of time for businesses and customers to reach new people.

The Wallflower Floral Artist, which specialises in floristry for weddings and other events, is the first local business to take advantage of the opportunity to reach new customers in Northallerton.

Lisa Sopekan, owner of The Wallflower Floral Artist, said: “When I saw that Darlington Building Society was offering space in its branches for local businesses I jumped at the opportunity to reach new customers and spread the word about my business.

“I’m new to the world of business, but I have always loved flowers and floristry. I think my passion comes across when I get to speak to customers face-to-face.

“The company is only a few months old, so it’s really important that I get out there, to allow people to see examples of my work. In this line of work a lot of the customer base comes from word of mouth.”

Kayleigh Turner, Branch Manager at the Northallerton branch of Darlington Building Society, said: “It’s fantastic to have The Wallflower Floral Artists using the free space we have in the branch. A big part of the ethos of the Society is supporting local people so it’s great to be able to help a new business get off the ground in this way.

“Although this is the first time we have had a pop-up shop from a local business at the branch we hope to have many more throughout 2016 as we celebrate the 160th anniversary of the formation of the Society. 

“We’re always looking to support local people, businesses and organisations in any way possible, from opening up spaces in our branches, to helping move equipment around and even financial support.” 

If any local organisations or businesses would like the opportunity to share some space of one of Darlington Building Society please contact them direct on contact-us@darlington.co.uk or pop into your nearest branch.

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