In such a worrying and uncertain time, for many of our customers, their weddings have provided a positive distraction. Despite the fact that many couples have had to re-imagine and re-arrange their special day multiple times, it is still just that – their special day and it’s important that their experience planning their day, whether it be an intimate ceremony or a delayed celebration – be a joyful one.”
A family business, Jon Paul Menswear was first founded by Derby store owner, Mrs Lancashire’s, Grandfather, who opened the first branch in Swadlincote, which is now run by the company’s namesake, her father Jon Paul Burnton.
The Wedding Industry has been one of the hardest hit sectors during the Coronavirus pandemic. The #WhatAboutWeddings campaign reports that by the end of this month, over 200,000 weddings will have been postponed or cancelled in 2020.
Mrs Lancashire adds: “Wedding planning should be a fun, enjoyable experience, which is why our team decided to brighten things up with our cheerful new pink suits! We hope they raise a smile or two, even if hidden behind a mask.”
Newlyweds, Mr & Mrs Farkas, are one of the many couples who opted to adapt their plans rather than delay their wedding. They had a scaled-down, COVID-Secure ceremony at Shottle Hall in September.
Mrs Sarah Farkas and her husband couldn’t be happier with their decision: “We just wanted to say a huge thank you to Hannah & all the team at Jon Paul Menswear for their amazing customer service in these strange times.
We decided to go ahead with our Wedding in September (albeit with reduced numbers) and we are so glad we did as everything was perfect. We were still made to feel special and also safe when we went to the shop for our fittings with all the new COVID-Secure procedures put in place. Even though things are a little different at the moment we were still made to feel welcome and really looked after, particularly with the two young boys we had in tow. What more could you possibly ask for?”
The Great British High Street has been under threat long before COVID-19. For many retailers, the pandemic has left them struggling to survive. For some, however, the challenging circumstances have presented unique opportunities to diversify and stand out.
Mrs Lancashire concludes: “I am sad to say that my personal experience as a customer shopping locally, hasn’t been all that positive. In what is an undeniably stressful and anxious time for both staff and shoppers, there is a real sense of confusion and negativity. It is indeed a challenging time for everyone, however, a polite demeanour, friendly smile and a little understanding goes a long way in making a lasting positive impression.”
Emotional Resilience expert, Julian Hall, of Calm People says: “COVID-19 has created a lot of uncertainty and anxiety mainly due to people feeling control over their lives has been taken away. Any initiative like this that seeks to take a positive view and help people enjoy their shopping experience is a good idea. The More positive experiences we can have the better the cumulative effect on our mental health.”