Sandersons department store - destination shopping in Stocksbridge

Deborah Holmes, the woman behind the vision

Deborah Holmes, the woman behind the vision - Credit: Archant

Destination shopping is about knowing your niche. In Stocksbridge near Sheffield this is how it’s done

The Wellness Spa area

The Wellness Spa area - Credit: Archant

When it comes to shopping, Sandersons department store is a style honeypot. Fashionistas, style-seekers and lovers of luxury flock to the unique store, founded by Deborah Holmes.

Deborah opened the store in September 2016 in the newly opened Fox Valley Shopping Park in Stocksbridge - her hometown. Alongside her husband Mark Dransfield, she set about fulfilling her childhood dream to open a unique and independent boutique store. Deborah wanted people to have good things, for a good price but in a more than good environment.

As a store and a business, they are bold and brave. Sandersons is all about doing things differently, pushing the boundaries of what a department store should be and creating a space for customers that is calm, inviting, design-led and a pleasure to spend time in. Walking into the store offers you an experience, as opposed to simply a shop or a convenience stop. It champions Yorkshire too, presenting and stocking brands and products that are exclusive to this part of the region.

But it's not surprising, as it was always Deborah's plan to make something completely unique, that would really stand out in the retail world. Having sadly lost her life to cancer in January, Mark, their two children Rebecca and Lucy, and her sister Amanda are working hard to continue Deborah's incredible vision.

Sandersons is a destination department store a dream fulfilled for Deborah Holmes

Sandersons is a destination department store a dream fulfilled for Deborah Holmes - Credit: Archant

Now, the store is continuing to push into the future and change the shape of retail in the area with its new organic and vegan spa area, focused on stocking cruelty-free beauty. The team is focused on trailblazing feel-good retail with the launch of an instore Wellness Spa including products from brands such as Voya, Caudalie, Clarins and SKNRG, and on counter treatments at the new organic skincare area. Deborah was passionate about incredible customer service and was keen to always ensure that they were offering something more than the internet, something personal - she wanted to make people want to shop and spend time in Sandersons.

Perhaps most central to the in-store development too is that it helps Deborah's family know that they are making her proud and continuing all of her hard work. 'I am delighted and so proud of my fantastic team who work hard every day to upkeep the high standards and continue the legacy of my wife,' says Mark. 'We truly do pride ourselves on offering a completely unique experience unlike anywhere else, which is what makes us successful.'

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As if they were going to rest on their laurels and stop there - you'll also find personal shopping and exciting in-store events popping up in the near future. Clearly, their success is being recognised elsewhere too as they have recently won the prestigious Draper's Best New Independent Retailer and Best Customer Experience award. A proud legacy and a fine Yorkshire success story.

Sandersons in Stocksbridge

Sandersons in Stocksbridge - Credit: Archant

Sandersons in Stocksbridge

Sandersons in Stocksbridge - Credit: Archant

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