Tins of “Penarth Tea” are amongst the unusual range of items which are being stocked by Penarth’s newest gift shop which opens on Saturday .
The shop called “Not Socks Again“ (at the corner premises on the roundabout where Lana Beautique used to be) stocks everything and anything except those boring items, long regarded as the least original choice of gift of all …socks.
The shop being run by John McInally, the former registrar of the University of Wales along with two members of his former university team – Helen, who was Assistant Registrar, and Fran who was Appeals Officer . All three took early redundancy and decided to take the plunge into retailing .
Apart from her university career Helen also worked for a gift wrapping company in Canada and is putting that expertise to good use in the new venture. The business was first of all tested-out in temporary premises over the Image Boutique in Glebe St last Christmas and the public response was encouraging-enough to scale it all up for a full size launch.
The range of Penarth Tea stocked is specially blended for “Not Socks Again” by Chantler’s in Fishguard, Pembrokeshire – and is a special “seaside blend” with a “lemony tang” to it.
The greetings cards on display are made by local Penarth artists and many of the goods on sale, including scented candles are produced locally.
This, however isn’t solely a “girlie” gift shop – there’s stuff here for men too .
John says he’s always wanted to have a gift shop which stocks gifts for blokes and so there’s a section of the shop which has the accent on male gifts
The more macho items are sweets packed in tins that are replica Leica cameras, toffees in containers representing the famous steam locomotive Royal Scot, and drinks coasters that look like miniature gramophone records.
Not Just Socks is also participating in a Penarth-wide Palm Sunday Easter Egg hunt on Sunday April 9th – in which each participating retailer will display an egg with a specific letter of the alphabet on it .
By visiting all the shops, children will be able to note the letters – which should spell out a word in Welsh – and the first 50 with the right answer will be able to claim their prize at the Not Socks Again stall at the Paget Rooms Easter Fair on Sunday . The Easter Hunt is being organised in association with the Penarth Post.