Maldon, High Street….From time to time you hear people locally saying that the high street in Maldon is dead, killed off by likes of Tesco and Morrisons on the edge of the town. The town has just become a ghost town too many shops have closed or in the process of closing down and never enough car parking, so what are we left with. A high street just full of Banks, Building Societies, Solicitors, Charity Shops and Estate Agents.

Well my local high Street like a lot of other high streets across the country this is not the case, yes we have our fair share of Banks, Solicitors Estate agents and Letting agents etc, but we also have a wide cross section of dinning establishments, coffee shops and public houses along with a few well know high street brands, MandCo, Boots, Superdrug, Iceland, Marks and Spencer Food hall, Dorothy Perkins, Pound Stretcher, WH Smiths and Peacocks to but name a few.

Then we have the SME, small and medium local business enterprises that make up the rest the local community of the high street as I call it. The hair dressers, nail bars, taxi companies, florists, sports shop, shoe shops, ladies and gents clothing, electrical supplies, tool hire, bedding, carpets, fire places, sunbed, fishing tackle, jewellers, travel agents, art and framing, gift shops, dental practices, health and beauty and wedding dress supplies the list is endless.

On the outskirts of our town we have the Superstores Tesco and Morrisons. If I take the Tesco for instance they are a global grocery retailer ranked 2 or 3rd in the world so they should know what they are doing by now.

Over the years the major superstores chains have also taken in-house some different sections and set up small shops like the Morrison dry cleaning service or the Tesco Mobile phone Centre, Tesco Opticians along with the Pharmacy departments etc.

So the trick for any business is to specialise and try not to compete head on with the Tesco and Morrisons of this world. They have great brands built up over years with the help of endless national marketing and advertising budgets that no one outside the major companies can even think about competing with.

Well I came across such an instance the other day by chance it’s not usually a man thing to buy flowers or not in my case anyway. I needed some flowers and yes both the superstores do sell bunches of flowers etc, I have seen then in the entrance areas, I just wanted it to look a bit special, I don’t mean cost a fortune but to look as though I had taken pride in the purchase and not just grabbed the first bunch of flowers that I came to as I passed through Tesco on my weekly shop.

That’s when I found at the very top of the high street in Maldon, number one in fact the high street Maldon, a recently opened new business called “Stems” flowers for all occasions it said on the door, a small bespoke flower shop offering great service with a smile. The two young ladies were very helpful and the advice given about my requirements and the presentation of the product the flowers was truly amazing, and it didn’t cost me a fortune.

Living proof that if you company services are a little unique or you offer a bespoke service, along with being able to specialise away from what the major superstores offer, your rewards through hard work offering a quality bespoke service with a smile, value for money, your business can and will succeed against the big boy’s.

It certainly has changed my outlook about my local high street and I would certainly recommend anyone to visit businesses like Stems if you require flowers, and in future I would also suggest in the future that you don’t neglect your local high street, trust me you will be pleasantly surprised at what’s on offer.