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Shop Local: Romford childrenswear business may have shut without social media shift in lockdown, owner reveals

PUBLISHED: 12:10 23 October 2020

Caron Webb and her daughter Nicole outside Storky in Mercury Mall, Romford. Picture: Caron Webb

Caron Webb and her daughter Nicole outside Storky in Mercury Mall, Romford. Picture: Caron Webb

Caron Webb

A Romford shop owner believes her business may have closed if it hadn’t been for her family’s support in generating online sales during lockdown.

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Caron Webb runs Storky, a baby and childrenswear shop, which has a store in The Mercury and a stall at Romford Market.

She described the beginning of lockdown in March as a “quite terrifying” time and recalled how using social media helped to generate sales to “put food on our table”.

Caron said: “I care for my mother, who is 80, so there was a worry there and there was a worry of keeping my business afloat.

“We thought ‘What are we going to do?’”

Caron and her two daughters came up with an idea to list products on Facebook and Instagram, while a free delivery service was set up for the Romford area. She said the family travelled up to places like Colchester just to bring in some money.

She added: “I’m not very computer-orientated but my two girls are. Some stock we sold at cost just to bring money in.

“I think we just had to rally around as a family and deal with it.

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“In the end, the Facebook, the Instagram, that’s what helped us. If it wasn’t for that, I don’t think I’d have had a business to go back to or I’d be in a lot of debt.”

She said trade had been “OK” since returning to the shop and market stall, having run the latter for more than 20 years.

“A lot of people know me with the baby stall and the shop and we have a lot of loyal customers that do keep coming back.”

As a family-run business, Caron said they aim to go the extra mile for customers.

“An old lady was going by and her trolley has broken. So I get my screwdriver out and a bit of duct tape and I’m trying to fix it for her so she can get home.

“It’s little things like that you get from people like us.”

On the importance of shopping local, she said: “I think you should support your local area.

“I tell my girls if they want to buy from Topshop or anything like that, first look at your market, look at your independent shops.

“But if you are going to buy it anywhere, try and buy it in Romford because you are supporting where you live and where you’ve been brought up.”

To buy online, go to storkybabyandchildren.co.uk or search Storky Baby and Children for the Facebook page.


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