Blooming village florist manages to buck the trend

Snapdragon, Cross in Hand, Heathfield. floral d�cor artists
Snapdragon, Cross in Hand, Heathfield. floral d�cor artists

CROSS IN HAND is a lovely village but even residents would say it’s sometimes hard for businesses to thrive and prosper there, with a few notable exceptions.

Now along with the hugely successful artisan Albion Bakery, there’s a new kid on the block drawing in scores of delighted punters.

Snapdragon is the name of a new creative floristry company set on the south side of Cross in Hand High Street in a Victorian shop formerly occupied by a vintage clothes company.

The windows are choc-full of exotic plants such as oversized orchids, gigantic blue hydrangea and ornamental chilli peppers. Owner Julie Cattel-Killick told the Express: “The windows are our showpiece and the reception we’ve received from everyone are really positive. The shop had been empty for 18 months before we took over but we hope our displays add something to appeal to the eye as you walk or drive past. Of course we sell normal-sized plants as well as planted baskets.”

Any problems with parking in the busy road were solved when the firm was offered the opportunity for customers to leave vehicles in the car park of Oak Interiors nearby.

Julie, 50 from Punnetts Town works as long-haul in-flight cabin crew. She took on the business in May this year and has gradually built up her business, taking on contract work including a local kitchen company and producing floral tributes for a funeral director.

Although she’d been flying for 30 years, she decided to broaden her outlook and studied her (second) trade at Brinsbury Agricultural College. She said: “I really wanted to go into business but didn’t want to do something I knew nothing about.”

And she hopes to extend her range by including candles, diffusers and decorative hampers soon.

Julie works together with Candy Youngson.