Grantham electrical business considers future as plan to change shop into a home is submitted
A long-standing independent business in Grantham has had to adapt and diversify its services in the Covid-19 pandemic.
Thorold and Kent, an electrical goods and service retailer, based in Bridge End Road, is now in its 32nd year of trade and its owner, Steve Kent, says a move to larger premises could be on the cards further down the line.
He has recently applied for permission to change the use of the Thorold and Kent shop from retail to a residential dwelling.
However, he says the plan is merely for the business to assess its options, with an expansion possible.
Steve said: “We’re really sussing it out to see if we get the planning, and then we may look at opening somewhere else.”
With the shop closed throughout the pandemic, the team has diversified its services and has coped well in the circumstances, Steve said.
He has been involved since its inception in 1989, and says that this year has not been his toughest as a business owner, despite the challenges presented by Covid-19.
He said: “It’s been okay, different obviously, we’ve had to diversify what we do, but it’s been okay to be fair.
“We’re doing an awful lot of home wi-fi extensions. Obviously, people are setting up home offices and they’ve got no wi-fi in bedrooms and stuff, so we’ve been putting in wifi extenders. There’s been quite a lot of that going on.”
Like other non-essential retailers, Thorold and Kent will reopen its doors on April 12.
Discussing the business’s aims, Steve said: “We hope to fully reopen at some point, because we’ve not been able to do any sales from here at all. We [usually] sell quite a lot of spares and accessories and new TVs, Freeview boxes and recorders, but we’ve not really done any of that, so hopefully we will get that side of the business back up and running again.”
Steve praised his loyal customers and thanked them for their patience throughout the pandemic.
He said: “We continue to give the service to the town. Thirty-one years is quite a long time to be doing it.
“The people of Grantham are always brilliant. It’s fantastic. Obviously, we’re a bit snowed under because we’ve got people on furlough and people working from home. They’ve been really good.”