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Christmas trading during a global pandemic

Published: 12 October 2020 - Sarah Mead

British garden sculpture business, Andrew Kay Sculpture, share their thoughts about Christmas trading this year...

Stags are Andrew Kay’s most popular designs commissioned for Christmas
Stags are Andrew Kay’s most popular designs commissioned for Christmas

1. Have you now entered the Christmas period in terms of orders coming through?

Yes. Our Christmas period tends to begin mid-September and gets super busy this month and next. 

 

2. Is this Christmas on a par with those before so far? Or is it different?

We have had a lot of enquiries, but people are being slower to confirm their orders this year. There is normally quite a long timeline between a first enquiry and a final order but this year customers are being a little more cautious.

 

3. What percentage of your turnover do Christmas orders make?

Forty percent of our turnover comes from sculptures commissioned for Christmas so it is a very important period for us.

 

4. Are certain designs more popular than others for Christmas?

Our stag is by far the most popular design – and many people dress them at Christmas with lights. Hinds and does are also popular. 

 

5. Do you need to employ more staff over Christmas?

No, but the hours do tend to be longer.

 

6. Will the challenges of Covid make fulfilling Christmas orders more difficult? More time consuming?

We haven’t found it has impacted UK orders much but it has been a nightmare getting work to Europe and the United States – I have actually cancelled taking orders from customers in the US and Canada until spring 2021 due to logistical issues with delivery.

 

7. Do you feel confident about the year ahead?

I think we are lucky as our clientele are generally quite secure financially and have perhaps been less impacted by the pandemic. The depressing nature of this period is also creating something of a demand for our pieces. During lockdown, clients were looking for ways to improve their garden spaces and now homeowners want to invest in things which will cheer them up. Overwhelmingly, the response we get from clients following the delivery of our pieces is that the sculpture makes them feel really happy every time they look at it which is giving them a boost.

 

The work of Andrew Kay Sculpture can be seen gracing the landscape throughout the world and his client list of both private collectors and public bodies includes British peers and celebrities – from counts and viscountess’s to Richard Curtis, Sir Tom Stoppard and John Bishop. See more here: https://www.andrewkaysculpture.co.uk/

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