Businessmen buy Bradford garden centre

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Two East Yorkshire businessmen are relishing the challenge of rejuvenating one of Yorkshire’s biggest and best known garden centres following its acquisition.

Mark Farnsworth, owner of William’s Farm Kitchen at Hornsea and Sledmere and Tom Megginson, a Driffield businessman, have bought the Bradford business, Tong Garden Centre for an undisclosed sum.

Friends for over 30 years, the pair plan to make significant investments in pursuit of their vision to make Tong the leading Garden Centre in the North. Their plans include adding more facilities for children, creating a new café and food hall, refurbishing all areas, introducing concessions and remerchandising the plant area.

Mr Farnsworth said: “In years gone by, Tong was an iconic garden centre in the North of England and we intend to return it to that status and really broaden the appeal of the centre.

“We have some very exciting plans to add to the existing centre and very quickly we plan to revamp the existing restaurant facilities. We will also introduce a larger children’s play area and a food hall which will include a butchery and bakery. We will then look to complement our own offer by bringing in some well-known brands to add to the centre’s appeal.”

Of the partnership, Mr Megginson said: “Mark and I have been friends for decades and I’m excited that we finally have the chance to work together on this venture.

“Our skills and personalities complement each other and we are dedicated to trebling turnover and doubling the number of people employed over the next few years.”