Launching of drive-in garden centre

Longacres in the south of the UK is the first garden centre to offer its customers an automatic Drive-In Click & Collect service.

This system is Longacres’ response to two developments:

  1. the increasing popularity of webrooming*: researching items online and then buying or ordering them from a physical shop, and
  2. consumers’ growing need for convenience and efficiency.

Longacres has now introduced a special drive-in with parking facilities that reduces the check-in time for collecting orders to only 9 seconds! The carpark also has outdoor touchscreens via which items can be purchased. Shoppers can order compost or large garden articles in real time and they will then be immediately delivered to the carpark.

Mike Ainley, e-commerce manager at Longacres, is very satisfied and hopes to be able to offer his customers the garden centre’s entire range in this way in the future. Supplier Collectec would like to roll out the system to more garden centres. “We offer retailers an efficient solution that saves a lot of costs and rewards their customers with fast, simple and user-friendly service.”

Longacres created this service in response to recent findings of GfK Future Buy relating to changing shopper attitudes and behaviours. The research revealed the growing popularity of ‘webrooming’ in the purchase of products for in and around the home. Almost 60% of consumers now do such researching online, whereas that was still less than 20% last year.

Future Buy also found that buying items via physical shops is still moderately more popular than ordering them online. Read more about Future Buy’s research via the following link


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Bents Garden Centre launches six new retail departments

Bents Garden Centre in Glazebury just opened the latest phase in its expansion, with six new retail departments launching. Thermoflor now completed the last phase, which involved creating room for six new retail departments. New are the boutiques of Trespass/Nevis Sport and C-Crafts, a cook shop, a food hall and a children’s boutique. The shops vary in size from 300 m² to 900 m². Coming soon is a 500sqm Pet Place, which will include a pet deli, shop and spa cafe.

Bents is one of the most trendsetting garden centres in the UK, which the Garden Centre Association (GCA) proclaimed one of the ten Garden Centres of Excellence. On top of that, Bents has recently won several GCA Awards, among which were awards for the best restaurant and the best Christmas show.




Finding inspiration at Gardens by the Bay in Singapore

Visit Gardens by the Bay in Singapore, one of the Top 10 Indoor Gardens in the world. Last year the park was granted the International Thea Award, the ‘Oscar’ in the leisure branch. From the very day it opened, Gardens by the Bay has proved a hugely successful tourist attraction, drawing 5 million visitors in its first year.

The megapark with a value of $1 billion has an area of 101 hectares. It contains the two largest cooled conservatories in the world, the Flower Dome and the Cloud Forest, with more than 2000 different types of plants from all over the world. The conservatories have sustainable energy-efficient cooling facilities that allow savings in energy of at least 30% relative to conventional cooling methods.

Step into the impressive world of Gardens by the Bay by viewing the images here:


Thermoflor in action

Are you interested in our latest projects? British and German media have recently published articles on them:   Read more

2015 International Year of Light

UNESCO and the United Nations have proclaimed 2015 the International Year of Light. All over the world activities are being organised to underline the importance of daylight in our daily activities. Read more