All change at Shah’s in Lincoln

One of Lincoln’s best-known family furniture retailers is bowing-out for retirement – but another family firm is investing £500,000 in its showroom premises and creating 11 new jobs.

Dinesh and Dina Shah of Shah Furniture & Interiors in Dixon Street are having a closing down sale and on November 1, they will be handing over their site to expanding home improvement company, Palmers of Trent Bridge (Nottingham).

Palmers, a well-known East Midlands business specialising in fitted furniture, has had its eye on Lincoln for many months, and its team will be carrying out a refit before the business unveils its mid-to-upper market range with an exciting, post-Christmas, sale on December 27.

Lincoln Chartered Surveyor Banks Long & Co, which acted on behalf of the Shahs in letting their premises, said good connections, careful background planning and great timing, allowed the firm to swiftly seal the deal.

Director James Butcher said: “We had good advance knowledge of Mr Shah’s plans and our broad knowledge of retailers in the wider East Midlands, meant we were also well aware of Palmers of Trent Bridge when that business got in touch earlier this year to let us know they had a requirement for the City.”

Mr Shah said: “About three years ago, I told Banks Long & Co that we were looking to exit the business in 2015/2016. We have always had a good relationship and I think it is sensible to share your plans with professional advisers in this way.

“In the early part of this year, we learned that Palmers was looking for a site in Lincoln via Banks Long & Co and had been made aware of the potential availability of our site. Ultimately, Palmers was willing to move forward early with its plans, so this was an opportunity which we had to seriously consider.”

Dinesh and Dina, who acquired their business from the Baines family, when he was 21, were joined by his uncle and aunt Shanti and Jaya Shah in 1978. Together, they grew the venture and, over the years, it also had branches in Spalding, Grimsby and North Hykeham.

“The first thing I am going to do now, is take a six months’ sabbatical. It took 36 years to build-up the business from scratch and we shall miss our wonderful, loyal customers, but now it is time to take stock. However, I don’t rule out doing something else in the future,” said Dinesh.

Palmers Managing Director Jim Mersh said: “We are thrilled to be opening Palmers of Lincoln. We began thinking about coming to the city about four years ago but, with the advent of the recession it wasn’t a good time. It became a more logical prospect towards the end of last year.

“We were attracted to Lincoln because it seems to be a very modern, up-and-coming city. There is a lot of expansion going on and people are planning for the future. In addition, we feel our innovative room designs and complete service, including building work, will be welcomed by the residents of Lincoln and set us apart from the competition.

“We design, supply and install kitchens, bedrooms, bathrooms, disability bathrooms and home offices. Most importantly, we have been established for 24 years in Nottingham, we are investing £500,000 in this move, and people in Lincolnshire can feel reassured that we intend to offer them a first class service.”

Banks Long & Co Director James Butcher said: “We are delighted to have been able to work with two such prestigious family businesses in the leasing of the Dixon Street site to Palmers of Trent Bridge, and we wish them the best for the future.

“It is always appreciated when clients and occupiers talk to us early about their plans as it allows us to match up requirements with properties coming onto the market at an early stage, making the whole process much easier and quicker for both the landlord and the tenant.

“Palmers is actually based in 4,000 sq ft premises at Trent Bridge, but Shah’s showroom extends to 6,500 sq ft, so this underlines the company’s confidence in the Lincolnshire market.”