Harrogate Nursery Fair 2012 the best yet!

Published:  03 April, 2012

With a brand new layout revitalizing an already successful format, Harrogate Nursery Fair 2012 was buzzing with visitors all in the mood for buying. Exhibitors have been contacting Nursery Industry daily to comment on the success of the Show and with so many positive emails flooding in (look out for more in the next issue!) congratulations must go to the HNF team for putting on another fantastic event for the Industry.

Speaking after the Show, Adrian Sneyd, show organiser commented: “This year’s show has exceeded all of our expectations. The new changes made certainly seemed to go down very well on the whole with exhibitors and customers alike enjoying the refreshing change experiencing all the new halls for the first time. We have received numerous calls and emails, particularly from exhibitors stating how successful the show has been for them this year and commenting on the amazing buzz surrounding the event. The fabulous weather certainly set the scene for visitors arriving and the sunny mood seemed to radiate throughout the halls for the entire duration of the show.”

Debbie Moran, Manager of The Babyden Stores @ Folkestone & Kings Hill said:“The show this year far exceeded my expectations.  I visited on the Sunday and really could have spent another day or two there as there was so much to see!  The stands were eye catching, diverse and busy, thus creating a real buzz about the place.  There are some great new products due to launch this year so it really was well worth the long journey to see these first hand and place advance orders.  Highlights for me included the Oyster Max, Jane Matrix Base & Trider, Silver Cross Surf Elevation plus the amazing new iCandy colours with fantastic point of sale stands. Well done and thank you to both the organisers and exhibitors.”

Gary Watts, Managing Director of WH Watts & Son agreed: "I thought it was a really good show. There was plenty to see, the stands were well spread out with people there to help direct you between the halls if needed. I was very impressed; there was just so much choice and I got everything I wanted. I was the first one in on the Sunday and got loads of good deals, placing orders with Britax, Dorel and a multitude of others. I spent quite a few quid actually! The Britax order turned up the day after I got back! I’m feeling very positive about the Industry; this last month has been the best yet for us and I’m delighted."

Mia Mills, Senior Buyer at, commented: “The Kiddicare team really enjoyed the Harrogate show this year – we saw lots of great new products and are looking at expanding our range and customer choice following demonstrations we saw at the show.

“It was a really busy show; bigger and better than ever before, but it was interesting to see companies utilising smaller stands. Even big brands had cut back their exhibition space at the show, but were conveying their ranges and services just as effectively. It’s interesting and inspiring to see this shift in line with the economic climate.”

David Winstanley of Winstanleys Pram World added: “Harrogate Nursery Fair proved very enjoyable this year and I found some new suppliers and also re-established links with some previous ones! Highlights of the show for me were the Oyster Max, Easywalker June, Brother Max, Oxo Tot and the new range of colours from iCandy.”

Daniel Terminiello, Managing Director of the Peppermint stores said: "Harrogate is a good opportunity to meet with suppliers, talk about the industry and gain a better understanding of it. I can see all my suppliers in one place rather than having to travel up and down the country to see them individually!

"I think the suppliers did a great job of presenting the brands, but I think the independent sector needs to talk to the industry more. Retailers need to support the trade shows more and listen to what’s happening out there. I learn so much from each show I go to. In terms of staff training it is brilliant – I always take my staff along as it gives them an opportunity to see and try out a range of products to find out how they work. My guys came away from Harrogate invigorated, they were buzzing with ideas for the store on the way home!"

Speaking to Nursery Industry, Paul Walters, General Manager of Tippitoes said: “Harrogate was again a huge success for Tippitoes and baroo, and it was a fantastic platform for us to launch our new products – in particular, we are extremely appreciative of the support we received for our brand new 3in1 travel system, Toto, which will be available in the next few months. We felt there was a very upbeat spirit on display at the show and it was great to come across so many new faces as well as established supporters of the brand.”

RECARO Child Safety enjoyed a successful exhibition at the Harrogate Nursery Fair this year. The company's Michelle Keeler said: "We enjoyed meeting new and existing customers, demonstrating our fantastic products to them.

"The Monza Nova Seatfix and Babyzen Black Frame were the highlights of our stand, we also launched the stylish Babyzen sleeping bags.

"Our adapters for the award winning Young Profi plus infant carrier generated a lot of interest as we displayed it with strollers made by other manufacturers that it can be fitted to."

Faye Norton of Faye and Lou said: "We had really great feedback from Harrogate, from both new customers and our existing customers. The Faye and Lou brand is well known for its high quality products in bright and trendy packaging. The brightly coloured Rainbow and Cozio extra large muslins are unique and very popular with retailers and consumers. The Breastfeeding Butterfly is still one of the best feeding covers on the market and is now sold in 6 beautiful fabrics. Faye and Lou will be extending their range and launching a number of other products by the end of the year."

Sue Griffiths of Hauck Group added: “Once again the Harrogate Nursery Fair has come and gone.  Exhibitors large and small work hard creating their stands to show new products to the best advantage and now is the time for quiet contemplation to see if it was all worthwhile. 

“Robert and his Team must be congratulated for putting on a well organised show and also for arranging our entertainment.  The two Party Nights were well attended with some revellers not getting to bed much before dawn.  However, everyone took the opportunity to either network or just catch up with old friends. 

“This year’s Show was the biggest ever and I’m sure it must have been tiring for visitors getting round to see everyone.  We at hauck were happy with the footfall onto our Stand.” 

Audrey Williams, Commercial Manager for Nursery, Kit for Kids said: “Kit for Kids Group was well received by peers within the industry; with both the Dual Core Mattress from Kit for Kids Baby, and the two new ranges from By Carla a success. The show also solidified our position as a market leader within the nursery industry.”

Kelly Palmer of iCandy commented: "The Harrogate Nursery fairs have always been a busy and exciting time for iCandy and the 2012 show was no exception. The atmosphere on our stand was filled with excitement for the preview of the beautiful peach 2, peach blossom 2 and peach blossom twin 2 collections along with the stunning peach London limited edition. We enjoyed spending time with all of our stockists at the show and we now look forward to the year ahead."

Reinhard Punke of Theraline, a leading manufacturer of mother and baby comfort brands, said: “We had a good show; it was great to catch up with all our customers. Our new cover designs for the best selling Original Pregnancy and Feeding pillow were exceptionally well received, as were the Wynnie, C-Section Belt and the Plushy Moon pillow.”

Speaking after the show, founder of Brother Max, Jonathan Gold, commented: “After a long week we’re tired and now pretty much running on the adrenalin from the show. Of course we hoped that the 22 new products we showcased would go down well, but we can’t quite believe just how well they were received. We were also thrilled with just how many new retailers of all shapes and sizes joined the Brother Max family, showing that our decision to broaden our focus to also grow Brother Max within independents is proving the right thing to do.

Cara Sayer from SnoozeShade has nothing but praise for the Harrogate show: "It was our third year and I think it was one of the best I've been to. Hall H was a great new location for us and we managed to catch up with many of our existing retailers as well as taking plenty of orders from new customers. It's a fantastic opportunity for retailers to see the whole of the SnoozeShade range in one place and a good one for us to be able to update them on all our award wins and marketing activity we undertake to support the brand. We've started some interesting international conversations and there were more bricks and mortar retailers starting up - hopefully a sign of an upturn in our economy.”

Rob Pascoe, Director of Mojo Distribution commented: “For Mojo Distribution the Harrogate show was a great success. Moving to a 100sqm stand was a big commitment for us, but we were able to showcase all our brands in the way we wanted. We were really pleased to see that the UK and Irish retailers supported the show as it is imperative that we all work together in these tough times. We took on a number of new retail accounts for TFK, Lässig and Aerosleep and our NoJo bedding line from the USA created very strong interest. To gain a highly recommended in the BANTAS for the ‘AeroSleep 3D protect’ topped the weekend off. We are already looking forward to 2013.”

Andrew Ratcliffe, MD, Dorel UK Ltd said: “It seemed like the nursery industry was out in force this year with the expansion of the show. On the whole it was a good show and we were pleased to pick up a BANTA award for Maxi-Cosi. KUB’s new range of cots were also very well received by the retailers and we had some valuable feedback.”

Mark Nicholls, Marketing Director, The Little Green Sheep said: “This was The Little Green Sheep’s second year at Harrogate, and we chose a position in the new Hall H with great results. The show saw the launch of our new Mattress PodPOS to support our range of chemical-free natural mattresses; with retailers providing great feedback on both the design and benefits of using no additional floor or wall space. We also managed to see all the major buyers with the exception of one, as well as some fantastic independents who we work hard to support. Overall, it is set up to be a very exciting year for the brand!”

Paul Howes, National Sales & Marketing Manager for Rochingham said: “The Rochingham stand was very busy this year exhibiting their three mattress ranges, Rochingham, My First Little Bed from Silent Night and Naturally Inspired. Also showcased was their new, ‘Mum to be, birth, baby and beyond’ pack. This cleverly designed system can help to provide mum with a good nights sleep by reducing interface pressure in key areas and supporting the body in a variety of positions. Using the interchangeable sensory cover, the bolster transforms into a luxurious feeding pillow and a baby nest to encourage tummy time fun or sitting, whilst stimulating your baby’s senses through sight, sound and touch.”

Jeremy Minchin, Director of Hippychick commented “This year Harrogate Nursery Fair was a pivotal moment for Hippychick. Our stand was show stopping and labelled by many as the ‘Hippychick zone’. Having such an impressive stand enabled us to give sufficient space to each and every one of our products. Overall footfall was up on last year and Dream Tubes winning the Safety Category in the BANTA awards set the show off to a great start”.

Breanna Yen, Sales and Operations Manager, MaByLand said: “The Harrogate Nursery Fair has always been our favourite trade show for a number of reasons, but this year’s show has been our best so far!  As a small company it was really worth entering the BANTA Awards, as the Winners of the Feeding, Cleaning and Changing Category with our MATchel, we received real recognition from retailers who visited the show, as well as from fellow exhibitors.  We really enjoy the evening events as they bring the exhibitors, retailers, and even the press together allowing for fantastic networking opportunities as well as creating a genuine community feel!”

CONCORD showed its most dramatic range ever at Harrogate in 2012 including their first ever lightweight pushchair, the compact and comfortable CONCORD QUIX, the  lightest baby car seat the CONCORD AIR and the new TRANSFORMER X-BAG in the award winning TRANSFORMER series.

The celebrity favourite the NEO CARBON, being re-launched in 2012, drew much attention from both the media and buyers. Delia Pander, CONCORD’s New Marketing Manager was delighted with her first visit to the show. She says: “for us it was all about innovation which impressed visitors to our stand, they love the fact our products are not only very attractive but also award winning in safety and style’.

Paul Davies, Senior Marketing Executive, Binatone Telecom said: “Harrogate provided a fantastic platform for showcasing our current award winning monitor range, gauging feedback on our upcoming innovative products and also gave us a unique opportunity to talk with many independent retailers. We rarely have an opportunity to do such a thing, making this event a mutually benefitting experience for both manufacturer and retailer.”

Samia Khan, Managing Director of Aden + Anais in the UK said: “This was our first Harrogate and we were very excited to meet so many wonderful new stores in the Nursery arena. The atmosphere that is created at Harrogate made it a pleasure to be exhibiting and the show organisers were brilliant ensuring our show went without a hitch!”

Jouko Nykanen of Sunproof commented: “Sunproof exhibited at this, their tenth Harrogate Nursery Fair, with a full product portfolio and came away feeling buyers were showing their strongest confidence in spending for several years. There was an air of positivity in rapport and feedback from customers old and new, and several new bricks and mortar store startups visited Sunproof. Sunproof had a successful and busy show and came away with its best clutch of orders taken (for both forward and in-season deliveries) in several years."

Fiona Woodhead of Weybury-Hildreth said: Weybury Hildreth Ltd’s stand looked as vibrant and eye-catching as ever and Lee-anne Simpson reported a ‘fabulous show’ well attended by all the key buyers. WHL showcased the children’s tableware collection ‘Toddler’, designed in Denmark and winner of the prestigious international red dot design award.  Koo-di previewed the bright and fun bath time collection alongside the Koo-di Car Accessory range and both were a big success.  PurFlo attracted visitors onto the stand with the award winning PurFlo Travel SleepSac and Anti-Allergenic Mattress.”

Fiona McMullan of Johnston Prams said: “Jane has enjoyed another successful Harrogate Show we were thrilled at the positive responses we have had from buyers and press to our new product launches – for the new Twone, Muum and Matrix Light Platform. Harrogate has always been an important UK trade show for us and gives us the opportunity to showcase our New 2012 range. We were also delighted that Jane’s Trider Matrix received a Highly Commended certificate in the Wheeled Goods Category at the BANTA Awards”.

Founder of Momymoo, Joelle Seksum, said: "This is the first time we've exhibited at Harrogate and the show has been a big success for us. We've had really positive feedback from buyers, especially for our cleverly designed Premium Maia Change Bag which we launched at the show. We've been able to make some important contacts and have had a lot of interest from independents in the UK and further afield, both big and small retailers. Overall, it's been a very successful show for Momymoo."

Gordon Downie, Sales & Marketing Director, Toddletime Ltd commented:  “I always wonder whether trade shows really deliver but I am reminded of the quote, only 50% of my marketing budget works, trouble is I don’t know which 50% it is. So we continue to support the annual Harrogate fest.

“I’m convinced attendance was down but quality is always better than quantity and we fared well enough in that respect. Overall I judged it to be successful.”

Andrea Harrison of Itti Bitti said: “Harrogate exceeded all of our expectations and more.  We were absolutely delighted with the feedback that we received from the visitors to our stand, with both of the itti bitti and ones&twos brands being extremely well received as well as the Rockin Green brand that we distribute in the UK and Europe.  We are already looking forward to returning next year and have some exciting plans in development”.

James Donaldson of Babies Go Cd's said: "We had a fantastic time at Harrogate and were overjoyed with all of it - the orders taken at the show, meeting new people and of course saying ‘hello’ to many of our current stockists. Thanks to our stand neighbours too who positively encouraged more music when one Babies Go CD had finished playing.”

Brother Max

Neil Slagel, MD of Petite Star commented:  “I think this was our busiest Harrogate ever!  Our new NJOY Bubble reversible buggy caused a stir and we had a massive response when Pushchair Trader posted breaking news about the NJOY on their Facebook page.  Lots of orders for our new Zia Evolve pramette travel system too which is great endorsement when we’ve spent so much time developing these products.

Clare Condon, Sales Director, Il Tutto said: “My first time in Harrogate and what a wonderfully friendly show it is.  We had lots of orders for our new range bags, especially the Georgia and lots of repeat orders for our best-selling Nico, so we’re super-happy.   There’s a real buzz around the show, a sense of optimism which is great to see.  I’m not sure my feet will recover in time for the Melbourne baby show straight after Harrogate however...”

Bryony Coles, Commercial Director, Suncrest added: “It was great to be able to show off our gorgeous Joules nursery range to a whole new set of retailers at Harrogate and we were bowled over by the response.  We also wanted to gauge response to our Suzy Zoo range of bedding and exciting new toys both of which are arriving this summer.  It was lovely to have all the positive feedback and great to be at such a busy and obviously thriving show.”

Bradley Guin, Head of Online Sales & Marketing, BabaSlings commented: "This year was a very special Harrogate for BabaSlings Ltd.  The launch of our new POS display, theQube, was very well received and we had plenty of entrants into our competition.  We were very happy with the turn out and interest in our new products, especially by the Independents would we made a particular effort for this show.  And whether you made it to our stand or not, everyone will have surely seen theBabaSling walking around with our sponsored bags.  Overall a great success!"

Debbie Grant, Bibs + Stuff, said: "With a completely new look stand and a new hall it was all change for us this year – and it certainly was one of the best shows yet! We were really impressed with the new Hall H, it was light and airy and there was a steady flow of traffic throughout the three days. Even on Tuesday we were taking orders up until the very end which was fantastic!

"It was great to see both current and perspective customers and show them all the new lines as well as established favourites – there was real buzz around our stand as there were so many exciting developments to share!"

Nick Green, MD, Start-rite Furniture was very impressed with the Show: “The UK launch of Start-rite furniture at the Harrogate Show has been a long time in the planning and we are delighted to say that the brand and product range were just as well received as had been anticipated. We were especially pleased with a highly commended award for our lollipop play table and being short listed for the brook cot in the BANTA awards.

"With a flurry of interest from the off we took our first stockist orders within hours of the show opening. Enquiries came from both independent and multiple high street stockists in all corners of the UK and included enquiries from two foreign customers. We couldn't have hoped for wider reach. Our range for 2013 is already in the planning as well as our Harrogate presence after such an encouraging reaction this year."

BundleBean has had another successful show at Harrogate and come away with a whole host of new contacts and exciting opportunities.  Emily Goodall, Director of BundleBean Ltd says: “We had a fantastic three days, catching up with existing stockists and showcasing our new red star fabric design for BundleBean Original and our new product, BundleBean Solar, both of which were very well received.  We got some very positive leads for overseas distribution and look forward to a busy few weeks following up.  As ever, the Harrogate show reminds one what a fantastic industry this is and how pleased we are to be growing our brand alongside so many other dynamic and innovative companies. Without doubt the highlight for us was winning Highly Commended in the BANTAs in the Travel Accessories Category.  Thank you to the BPA and Nursery Fair for another great show!”

Tanya Bulloch of Bravado said: “Our previous experiences up to 2009 at Harrogate were for the Lingerie and Swimwear show which was always a positive experience so we were looking forward to this exhibition.  In the Queens Pavilion the exhibitors had a great camaraderie and from arrival to end, the staff and porter services provided were exceptional.

“With the sunshine making an unexpected March entrance we thought that this would have an adverse effect on visitors.  However, new accounts were opened and we’ve come away with more prospects than we were hoping for.   We are looking forward to our next Harrogate Show.”

Helen Bristol, MD Skibz added: “The Harrogate Nursery Fair 2012 was easily one of Skibz best shows ever! We are still on a high from it. It’s great to come up here and feel so much positivity about your products – it’s so easy to forget how much people actually like what you do when you’re stuck away in an office. We came away with so many more orders than we dared hope for. It was such a lovely friendly atmosphere too, so well organised with lots of really helpful staff on hand. Roll on Harrogate 2013 we say!”

Louise Carr, inventor of the award winning Cot Wrap said: “Harrogate was a great experience for Safe Dreams.  It was our 3rd year of exhibiting and for the first time we felt like ‘old-hands’.  Our latest products, Safebreathe Hoppy and Patch, received a fantastic response and were shortlisted for a BANTA award.  We also found out during the show that the Cot Wrap had won the Bounty Made by Mum and Dad Awards.  We are already looking forward to next year!”

Di Mayze, the brains behind TugTrio commented: "Harrogate has been my best show yet! With a great mix of buyers I've already taken orders from new retailers while others have extended their range to include TugTrio. I've also had great feedback on my new products. The only disappointment was for the second year running there was no time for tea at Betty's!"

Tony Stephens, UK Sales Agent for the B.sensible range of waterproof bedding said: “The number of visitors appear to get less every year but we still had a very successful show, with major retail stores visiting our stand and showing great interest in the attributes and qualities of our products and this year we noticed more of our visitors knew of the B.sensible brand which was very encouraging to know. Everyone liked the new baby packaging we launched at the show and we look forward to moving B.sensible forward this year to get ready for next years show.”

Harrogate 2012 set the scene for CuddleCo’s first specialist nursery trade show. The company, founded by Jonathan Feingold, a well-known face in the industry, debuted their Kiddü collection of baby products.

“I’m delighted with the response we have had from retailers, many of whom took advantage of our show bundles, a great deal for those wishing to stock Kiddü products,” said Jonathan Feingold, Managing Director.

 Nick Hampton, Director, Ardega Distribution said:  “We completed more orders than any other show, made many new excellent contacts and discussed expanding our range into some very new and innovative products, which we are all very excited about.

All in all, Harrogate Nursery Show 2012 was a great success for us and many other exhibitors, and we are looking forward to next year.”

TOMY’s Antonia Rainbow, senior marketing manager (nursery), said: “This year’s Harrogate Nursery Fair was an exciting new start for TOMY in the nursery market – with a new location in Hall D and a brand new product range to exhibit. We were very happy with this year’s show as it gave us a chance to introduce the new collections, in particular JJ Cole, Lamaze and The First Years ranges, for the very first time in the UK. The stand was busy all week with both existing and new customers, providing the ideal platform to showcase the full breadth of our combined nursery ranges.”

Joolz was delighted to showcase the limited Edition Expedition and the special Earth Edition, alongside the Joolz Day at this year’s Harrogate Nursery Fair.

The team was on hand to talk through the Positive Design concept, outlining the overriding notion that all Joolz pushchairs are designed around the human body, that of the parent and of the child. The team received fantastic feedback from retailers.

Joolz would like to extend a huge thank you to the retailers for their continued support and is looking forward to a fantastic year working with partners both old and new.

This was the second year that Mutsy had exhibited at Harrogate and were overwhelmed with the amount of new accounts they opened during the three days of the show.

Mutsy spent many hours demonstrating the new Evo pushchair retailing £399 and the Easy Rider umbrella buggy which retails at a recession busting £105. Three full days of order taking means that Mutsy are considering taking a larger stand at next year’s show.

Rob, Niels, Paul and Janet would like to thank the organisers for a great show and the buyers for their confidence in the Mutsy range.

Rob, Niels, Paul and Janet would like to thank the organisers for a great show and the buyers for their confidence in the Mutsy range.

The Brisk by Joie really caused a stir at Harrogate being the ONLY umbrella stroller with a one hand "single-touch" fold while weighing in at only 8.5kg. With the Brisk, a Star truly has been born!

This stroller is loaded with comfort inspired features such as: a fully enclosed headrest area and harness covers, lightweight aluminum chassis, 4 position flat reclining seat from birth, 2 position calf support, large storage basket and stylish swivelling single front wheels, which all combine to make the Brisk a superb, value for money, lightweight stroller. Brisk also pairs with the Joie 0+ Car seat - Gemm - to form an ultra compact travel system.

Joie UK has the philosophy to offer their customers quality, reliability and safety at affordable prices, and at £100RRP without a footmuff and only £120RRP including footmuff the Brisk is worth serious consideration for your selection. Available in a range of five colours Starburst, midnight, ladybird, kiwi and truffle), Brisk will be available from around June of this year.

The Joie Mimzy High Chair from Joie UK offers plenty of features. With a soft touch harness restraint designed to be gentle on baby's sensitive skin whilst keeping baby safe and secure, the Mimzy also offers a seven stage height adjustment giving great access to your baby and a perfect fit to your table. With removable cushion, 3 recline position seat, three position foot rest, tray storage and dishwasher friendly oversized tray, this really is a highchair worth consideration. The Mimzy also folds away to a very compact unit and having the ability to stand when folded on its own two feet gives great flexibility for storage.

The Mimzy is available in three colours: Twirly Bird, Ned & Gilbert and Yellow Chicks.

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