Gifts Today magazine

Two new Shared Earth shops

Shared Earth shopShared Earth, the UK’s largest Fair Trade retailer, will be opening two new shops before Christmas.

This development comes in difficult times for retailers, especially those that sell gifts.

Unlike many Fair Trade shops, and contrary to the image of Fair Trade generally, Shared Earth does not sell tea, coffee and food. It sells trendy, exotic gifts from around the world, with a bit of clothing and loads of jewellery thrown in.

One of the new shops has just opened in a prime site at the Chequers Shopping Centre in Maidstone, Kent, and is run by franchisees Luke Dolby and Scott Green. “We’ve had a fantastic first few days,” said Luke. “Is this really the recession? Whatever, people seem to really love our products. We’ve already opened successful Shared Earth shops in Canterbury and Brighton, but this one is going to outshine them both.”

The second new shop will open shortly at Amazon World, the popular visitor centre on the Isle of Wight. Paul Kent, a retired fireman, who will run it with his wife Helen, is champing at the bit to open.

“I’ve spent a week training at Shared Earth’s flagship store in York,” he said, “and I’ve never met a business with staff that are so dedicated to what they’re doing. Ethical trade is the voice of the future and I can’t wait to get started. There’s nothing like Shared Earth on the Isle of Wight, and a zoo is a perfect location, with all their products from Africa and Asia."

Shared Earth, which now has 11 shops, is a pioneer of recycling, with recent gift ranges made from recycled bicycle chains and rubber tyres in India. Jeremy Piercy, Shared Earth’s founder, is passionate about the environment. He said: “With global warming on everyone’s minds, people in Britain are looking for different options. Handmade, fairly traded gifts are the perfect answer, and if they’re made from recycled materials too, all the better.”

Social Links