2020: Meet the Winners

The Best Small Shops competition celebrates, not only the commitment and creativity of entrepreneurial independent retailers on the UK's High Streets but also, the central role independent retailers play in their local communities.
The Best Small Shops Competition is now in its its fifth year of celebrating Indie Retailers in the UK high streets and shopping parades.

The retail landscape is constantly evolving, giving independent retailers the opportunity to be the marketspace in a unique way, offering customers specialist knowledge, products and customer service. The annual Best Small Shops competition gives us the chance to celebrate this unique industry and show consumers what makes these small shops just so special.


The Best Small Shops competition is in association with Maybe* - Social media engagement and insight tools that help you deliver results.


Cornucopia crowned the Best Small Shop of 2020!

Family run, independent, home and gift shop in Worcester named as Britain's Best Small Shop of 2020!

Cornucopia, whose ethos is all about quality and individuality, stocks both iconic British brands as well as products with a Danish influence that originated with the business founders.

During lockdown it opened a Trouva boutique online with owners Clare and Hannah Bishop taking products home from the shop and turning their garage into a distribution centre. This enabled them to focus on distributing products to customers all over the world as well as giving them the confidence and incentive to open their own online shop.


Judges' Comments

In their comments about Cornucopia, the judges said that they "loved their resilient approach combined with their community spirit. They are very active on social media and support other local and independent businesses and the wider community. They are active in initiatives that help drive footfall and are BID members. They understand that every place is the sum of its physical and digital parts." 

Watch Cornucopia's winning video now to learn more about the winning shop and see their excellent reaction upon hearing that they were crowned the Best Small Shop of 2020!


Runner-up to Britain's Best Small Shop of 2020: A G Hendy & Co

A G Hendy & Co is a homeware shop in Hastings, which offers practical plastic free, eco-friendly goods for the home.

The shop prides itself on old-fashioned customer service, where the everyday is made special. Online has grown immensely for it since lockdown first occurred and it is developing its web retail further and enhancing the customer experience.

Judges' Comments

The judges said they loved "the distinctive character that they have created for the shop, tying into the local community and creating events and services that will be definitively theirs. The visual impression that they created for the shop is exactly as they say - it creates an experience and that's brilliant." They also commended the shop's "clear commitment to reducing their environmental impact".




Runner-up to Britain's Best Small Shop of 2020: Nourish Zero Waste

Nourish Zero Waste is an ethical, packaging-free, zero waste provisions shop in Topsham, near Exeter.

Nourish Zero Waste shop opened in 2019 with the aim is to offer an alternative shopping experience to people who are keen to reduce their use of packaging and plastics, opt for healthier ingredients and start their journey to a more sustainable way of life.


Judges' Comments

The judges referred to it as "clearly an innovative business working hard to engage with the local community." They said they liked the drive and determination about this business, its pioneering spirit, calling it "cause-driven, honest, authentic, and energetic". "The proof of the pudding is in the eating," they added, "in the sheer amount of single use plastic they have managed to eliminate from the local area. The use of technology to make the business smarter and the collaborative approach with others during lockdown is really impressive."




New award category for 2020

This year's competition was revised to better reflect the current retail climate. The Judges were seeking entries from independent retailers that have been demonstrating specific innovation to combat the impact of COVID-19 in a new award category sponsored by booost, the loyalty, gifting and promotions app.

The new COVID-19 Innovation category is sponsored by booost, the loyalty, gifting and promotions app. 




Most Innovative Business During COVID-19: Graces Bakery

Three generation family bakery in Ryde, Graces Bakery, was recognised with a national award for the way it navigated its way through the first Covid-19 lockdown.

During lockdown Graces supported their local community and hospital by supplying baked goods and sandwiches through a delivery service, while also building a brand new website in just one week.


Judges' Comments

In their comments about Grace's Bakery, the judges commended their bagging of flour so that other local shops and supermarkets were kept stocked, calling it "very community orientated". The judges were impressed by their ability to quickly set up a brand new website and online shop to begin delivering Island-wide for free, achieving very large numbers and again helping out the community in difficult times. They said that Grace's Bakery was "a great example of an independent retailer being at the heart of its local community - not just the quality of the products or the commitment to serve the community in unusual times, but the imagination with which it has done so and its determination are really admirable."



Most Innovative Businesses During COVID-19: Small Stuff

Small Stuff is a children's shop in Sheffield specialising in ethical and eco-conscious lifestyle products and clothing for small children.

The retailer's online store thrived during lockdown, using customer knowledge to deliver the very best service, also adding informative Zoom videos. They sent out newsletters and free gifts to keep young ones entertained, as well as home schooling advice.


Judges' Comments

In their comments about Small Stuff, the judges said that the shop's use of Zoom for gift purchasing was "a brilliant idea during these difficult times, and definitely something other businesses can implement for continuing sales and reaching out to new customers." The judges recognised the way the shop had used its voice across social platforms to promote local shopping in the area. "This is always a great way to encourage more businesses to spread the word about who they are and where they are," the judges added. 


For more information about each of the five Best Small Shops award winners visit BestSmallShops.uk.