The Bridge Street clothing store has been praised for its customer service and staff team
A city centre women’s clothes shop is celebrating after being nominated in a nationwide search to find the UK’s favourite local business.
Dawn Robinson is the owner of Chester Boutique and said: “We’ve been in Chester for 11 years now and we have a very close knit team of 15. 80% of our team were customers beforehand. I joke with customers that they’ll soon be working for us, because if you love our clothes, you can sell our clothes.
“The fashion industry forgets women after 45, and I think one of the things that customers appreciate about Chester Boutique is the advice and honesty we offer. We’d rather someone walk out of the store with nothing than sell them something that doesn’t suit them. We’re all normal women and we promote body confidence and feeling good about yourself. People get into their clothing routines, but we know what works for different body shapes and help women feel their best.
“I think this approach helps us to build strong relationships with customers, and they become less like customers and more like friends. They’ll come in for a cup of tea on a Saturday morning, and we’ll open the fizz at 4pm. We’re always being invited to Christenings and weddings, because we become part of our customers’ lives as much as they are part of ours.
“Our average customer is 45-50 years old but it’s not unusual to have a grandmother, mum and daughter all in the changing room together and all finding something that they love in the store. In many cases, we know their wardrobes better than they do. I’ll see something come in and straight away know that it will suit a particular customer, and what they have in their wardrobe that will go with it.
“This year, we held a fashion show at the Crowne Plaza in aid of The Neuro Therapy Centre, which provides support to people with neurological conditions. We tragically lost one of our girls to cancer, so on the night, we created a cocktail called the Gilly Fizz in her memory. Every time someone bought a Gilly Fizz on the night, £1 was donated to The Neuro Therapy Centre. We raised over £5,000 at the fashion show, and supporting charities is something we do all year.
“We were lucky to receive the award for the best independent in Chester at Chester Cathedral recently and we really do have the best customers. As well as the store in Chester, we started an online store too, and our same approach of honest advice and relationship building applies there too. Being nominated in the search to find the UK’s favourite local business feels brilliant, and is testament to our amazing team.”
The Chester Gift Card was introduced by Chester Business Improvement District’s (BID) in November 2020 to support high street shops from the effects of lockdown. Chester Boutique is one of over 120 businesses where you can spend the gift card.
“Chester is a city but it has a town feel and a strong community,” adds Dawn. “We’re a part of the Chester Gift Card because it helps to drive footfall and spend in the city centre. Wherever people spend their gift card, if it’s at Chester Boutique or in one of Chester’s cafés, restaurants or shops it’s all keeping money locked into Chester, supporting local employment and keeping Chester vibrant. We’re stronger when we work together, and the Chester Gift Card is one way that we can collaborate as a city.”
Chester’s Gift Card is part of the Town & City Gift Card initiative active across the UK and Ireland. Town & City Gift Cards is sponsoring the Help Us Find The UK’s Favourite Local Business competition.
Any local business can be nominated, with the business receiving the most votes being crowned as the UK’s favourite. The UK’s favourite business, and one person who nominated them, will receive £500 of gift cards.
Carl Critchlow from Chester BID said: “Congratulations to Dawn and the team at Chester Boutique at being nominated in the search to find the UK’s favourite local business. Local businesses like Chester Boutique make Chester an appealing place to live, work and visit, employing local people, and playing a big part in the success of our city. Please keep voting for your favourite local business in Chester.”
Colin Munro, managing director of Miconex said: “Local businesses are the beating heart of our towns and cities, going above and beyond to meet and exceed the needs of customers, building genuine relationships and providing outstanding customer service. The competition closes at midnight on the 21st December 2022, so there’s still time to nominate your favourite local business.”
Vote for Chester Boutique or any other local business for free at www.lovelocalwin.co.uk.
Voting closes on the 21st December 2022, at midnight.