GT Flowers, part of the Gilbert Thompson Group, wins Prestigious Industry Award

GT Flowers last week won a prestigious UK award – the 2014 Fresh Floral Supplier of the Year Award. The Leeds and Sheffield floral retailer is part of the fourth generation family business Gilbert Thompson Group.

GT Flowers were nominated for the award by a panel of industry specialists who were impressed by their forward thinking growth strategy and their commitment to supporting independent florists and retailers.

The Fresh Awards, the industry equivalent of the Oscars for the fresh produce and cut flower industry, are run annually by the Fresh Produce Consortium (FPC), the UK’s trade association for the fresh produce and cut flower industry. The announcement was made on 5 June at a spectacular Gala Dinner in London, hosted by Irish funny man and TV/radio presenter Patrick Kielty.

Director Daniel Thompson said: “We’re thrilled to have won this prestigious award and that our work has been recognised.”
“Sound strategic planning is behind GT Flowers’ ambitious expansion programme,” commented Nigel Jenney, Chief Executive of the Fresh Produce Consortium. “The success of its Sheffield venture is bringing forward plans for additional sites as well as a new online trading platform.”

Daniel is the great grandson of Gilbert Thompson, Gilbert started selling fruit and vegetables from a hand cart in Leeds Market in 1909, his business expanded and he moved in to premises at Leeds Kirkgate Market and later to the purpose built wholesale market at Cross Green.

Both Daniel and Richard Thompson, great grandsons of founder Gilbert, are involved in taking the business, Gilbert Thompson Leeds Ltd, forward In 2000 they took shares in the Yorkshire Produce Centre and from here launched GT Flowers, Richard manages the Fresh Produce side of the business which supplies fresh fruit and vegetables, along with prepared vegetables, to secondary wholesalers, retailers and schools in the North of England.

GT Flowers has enjoyed rapid growth in recent years with the opening of a 2nd branch in Sheffield in 2012, enabling them to serve a greater area of the UK with fresh flowers, plants and florist sundries.

Daniel said, “We’re very proud of our heritage and the fact that we have continued to build on the solid base created by our great grandfather, grandfather and father before us. With an excellent team in place we have been able to expand making us the largest wholesaler of plants, flowers and sundries in the North of England.

There are a number of new initiatives planned for 2014, including the launch of a specialist wedding service, designed specifically to support our growing customer base of independent florists and retailers and an online service allowing trade customers to order flowers direct from Holland.”