The Retas Awards 2021

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THE RETAS 2021

The Finalists

Illustrations generously donated by Paperwhale www.paperwhale.co.uk

#RETAS21 TUESDAY 16 NOVEMBER 2021 GROSVENOR HOUSE HOTEL PARK LANE, MAYFAIR LONDON W1K 7TN


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Being a great card retailer is like being a great gardener.

,

, !

Both require love nurturing dedication and digging deep


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A VERDANT COMEBACK Welcome to what is the 16th Retas awards event, a glorious celebration of the best of UK greeting card retailing.

M

y goodness... it is great to have everyone back together, especially after the Covid crisis necessitated the cancellation of the 2020 Retas and then just when we were all set for this year’s event to take place in its usual July timeslot, the Delta variant reared its ugly head. But as they say, the best things in life are worth waiting for, and so here we are today, albeit 16 months later than envisaged! Above: Max Publishing’s joint managing directors, Jakki Brown and Warren Lomax at the 2019 Retas awards event (the last to have taken The theme of this year’s place), which was on a Frida Kahlo theme. Retas - the finery of greenery - is very apt. To thrive and prosper as a greeting card retailer you need to constantly tend and nurture your business. A pot plant will only stay verdant if its roots are strong and it receives care and love. And it’s the same in successful card retailing. Strong retail roots come from getting the basics right – an inviting product selection, a customer service that goes beyond the call of duty, good communication with suppliers, solid logistics and fair financial management are all as vital to successful retailing as regular watering is to a hanging basket! The last 21 months have been incredibly challenging for anyone involved in retail. Three lockdowns for many cardies, and one just before our own big ‘bloom’ period prior to Christmas, as well as the subsequent footfall problems, could have left bricks and mortar retailing a barren desert. But so many of the greeting card retailers here today have shown, that through their good husbandry and inventive approaches many new buds of growth have formed, ‘leaf-ing’ us to really believe we can look forward to a ‘blooming’ good Christmas.

The Retas team Jakki Brown, Warren Lomax, Clare Hollick and Mark Grayson

The illustrations throughout this brochure as well as on The Retas entry form and website were kindly donated by the super talented Lianne Harrison, founder of Paperwhale.

The Retas 2021 are annual awards for UK greeting card retailers. They were introduced and are wholly owned by Max Publishing, publisher of Progressive Greetings Worldwide, Progressive Gifts & Home, Progressive Housewares, Progressive Party, Progressive Preschool and The Licensing Source Book.

Photos of The Retas Awards will be available to

view shortly after the event on The Retas website.

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www.theretaswawards.co.uk/media


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A BLOOMING GREAT C Where your money will go

Tickets 6 for £20 3 for £10

Every single penny from today’s raffle will go to The Light Fund, our industrywide charity. Set up in 2004, since its inception, The Light Fund has raised over £1.8 million and funded well over 200 charity projects helping men, women and children less fortunate than ourselves, all over the world.

Pack Your Bags Kindly donated by Hallmark Make those travel dreams a reality with £500 of Trailfinders vouchers to spend as you wish on flights and hotels with the award-winning travel agent!

A Shopping Bonanza Kindly donated by Kingfisher Cards Bring lots of finery to your wardrobe, add kit to your kitchen or treat others with a £400 spending spree at any John Lewis department store (or online) to use as you wish. Go on, you deserve it!

Cornish Coastal Retreat Kindly donated by Rosie Trow

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Get away from it all with a four night stay in a luxury lodge on the south Cornish coast. You can lap up the views of the sea from the comfort of this plush three bedroomed accommodation between Gorran

Haven and Carhaeys next Spring or early Autumn.

Relish The R&R Kindly donated by Cherry Orchard Publishing Luxuriate with some wonderful R&R with a lovely spa break at any of the gorgeous seven Champneys’ locations in the UK. You can relish in some well-deserved ‘you time’ with £350 to spend on a stay over and treatments of your choice.

Natural Inclinations Kindly donated by Woodmansterne Publications This wonderful two-part prize allows you to channel your inner Baggins! You can escape to the Lake District’s award-winning Quiet Site for two nights of Tolkienesque underground glamping in a spacious Hobbit Hole which can house up to two adults and three children. Plus, you can head back to nature with a foraging, cookery and lunch for two experience. You will join a professional forager, before cooking up your very own wild food lunch.


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CHARITY RAFFLE Verdant Gastronomy Kindly donated by Paperlink Yes, all the fantabulous restaurants in The Ivy Group serve a fabulous green salad, but so much more besides! With £300 at your disposal you can go for it with a romantic champagne dinner for two or invite some chums and share the joy.

Blooming Great Kindly donated by GBCC In keeping with the Finery of Greenery theme, you can beautify your borders, pep up your patio, titivate your trees or invest in your veggies with £250 of National Garden Centre vouchers that can be spent on thousands of products from any one of 1,400 UK garden centres and nurseries.

Fishing For Compliments Kindly donated by Carte Blanche Greetings You can cast your net wide into the world of Rick Stein with a £200 gift card to spend at the chef’s cookery school, at any of his restaurants, rooms, shops or on Stein’s at Home boxes.

At One With Nature Kindly donated by Pigment You can enjoy some quality ‘me time’ with a stay in a treehouse, shepherd’s hut, yurt or any of the wonderful places in Sawdays’ Canopy and Stars collection with £250 to go wild with.

Finery of Winery Kindly donated by Simon Elvin Whether you mad about Malbec, ga ga about gin or get in a fizz about champagne, you can restock your wine rack and cocktail cabinet with £200 to spend on tipples of your choice from Majestic Wine.

A Floral Fest Kindly donated by Paper Salad Bring natural beauty and colour into your home with fresh blossoming blooms delivered to you for a year from the revered florists Bloom & Wild.

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

London (inside the M25) Criteria: Independent card retailers in London (inside the M25) which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

Card Bureau, Holland Park

The Card Collection, East Molesey

Earlybird, Stoke Newington

Gift, Crouch End

The Indigo Tree, Streatham and Crystal Palace SPONSORED BY

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retail retail

www.icsimplicityretail.co.uk www.icsimplicityretail.co.uk Powered by The Imaging Centre Powered by The Imaging Centre

retail retail

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

Home Counties & SE Criteria: Independent card retailers in the Home Counties which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

Calladoodles, Carshalton

Cardies, Stevenage

Dee’s Cards, Leighton Buzzard

Objectables, Folkestone

Red Card, Petworth

Threads of Harpenden

SPONSORED BY

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

East Anglia Criteria: Independent card retailers in East Anglia which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

Celebrations Hallmark, Aylsham

Creativity, Sheringham

Elm, Norwich

Podarok, Cambridge

Quest, Bury St Edmunds and Holt

Sincerely Yours, Shenfield and Hornchurch

SPONSORED BY

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www.herita gear tanddesign.co.uk

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

South West Criteria: Independent card retailers in the South West which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

The Card Collection, Bath and Salisbury

Expressions, Cats Whiskers and Polkadot, Swindon, Bishops Cleeve and Keynsham

Just Cards, Honiton

Southbourne Cards, Southbourne

Cilla & Camilla, Beaminster and Bridport SPONSORED BY

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

Wales and the Midlands Criteria: Independent card retailers in Wales and the Midlands which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

Beau Regards and Willowsbrook, Wombourne and Stone

Austin & Co, Malvern

The Celtic Company, Welshpool

Hugs and Kisses, Tettenhall

Nest, Stoneygate, Thurlaston and Broughton Astley SPONSORED BY

Mooch Gifts & Home, Bewdley and Stourport-on-Severn

Something Special, Kingswinford

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

North and Northern Ireland Criteria: Independent card retailers in the North and Northern Ireland which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

Bailey’s, Ainsdale, Crosby and Maghull

Best Wishes, Garstang

Cards & Gifts, Sheffield and Dronfield

Love & Best Wishes, Sheffield

Reflections, Rugeley and Nantwich SPONSORED BY

Serendipity, Newcastle

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

Scotland Criteria: Independent card retailers in Scotland, which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

Bearing Gifts, Troon

Bijou and JP Pozzi, Elgin and Buckie

The Gift Boutique Hallmark, Fraserburgh

Paper Tiger, two stores in Edinburgh

Papyrus, Glasgow

Penny Black, two stores in Glasgow

SPONSORED BY

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hallmarkuki HallmarkUKandIreland HallmarkUKI

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

Newcomer or New Branch - South

Criteria: Open to all new independent greeting card shops that have opened since January 2018 in the South. Each should show excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

The Bean Hive, Falmouth and Kettering

Cranbornes of Shaftesbury, Shaftesbury

DickieBird Homestore, Battle

I Only Popped In For A Card, Clerkenwell, London

Kingfisher Cards, Sidmouth

Wishlist, Raynes Park

SPONSORED BY

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Are proud to sponsor

“Best Greeting Card Retailer Newcomer North”

We wish all the

s t s i l a n i Fthe very best of

luck!

With Love From

To find out more about our wide variety of gifts, plush and card collections please contact our Central Services team on 01243 792600 or visit our trader site. cbg.co.uk

www.cbgtrader.co.uk

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@CarteBlancheGrp

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Best Independent Greeting Card Retailer

Newcomer or New Branch - Nor th

Criteria: Open to all new independent greeting card shops that have opened since January 2018 in the North. Each should show excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

Coorie Doon, Campbeltown

HBB Cards, Newport Pagnell

Henry & Co, Bridgnorth, Nottingham and Ormskirk

Jessica Hogarth Shop, Robin Hood’s Bay

Papersmile, Normanton SPONSORED BY

Paper Wishes, Prestatyn

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Best Independent Bookstore

Retailer of Greeting Cards Criteria: Open to all UK independent bookstores who have shown excellence in retailing greeting cards over the last year.

Bookends, Christchurch

The Bookshop, East Grinstead

The Guisborough Bookshop, Guisborough

House of Books, Crouch End, Muswell Hill and West Hampstead

Spencer Thorn, Bude

Winstone’s Books, Frome, Sherborne and Sidmouth

SPONSORED BY

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Best Non-Specialist Independent

Retailer of Greeting Cards - North Criteria: Independent shops in the North for whom greeting cards are not their primary product area eg gift shops, sub post offices, children's shops, art galleries etc. Consideration is given for their greeting card treatment over the last year.

The Hollies Farm Shop, Little Budworth and Lower Stretton

Newark Post Office, Newark

QLM Home, Leeds

Stationery Supplies, Marple and Wilmslow

Tutbury Present Company, Tutbury SPONSORED BY

Utility, three stores in Liverpool and Manchester

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Best Non-Specialist Independent

Retailer of Greeting Cards - South Criteria: Independent shops in the South for whom greeting cards are not their primary product area eg gift shops, sub post offices, children's shops, art galleries etc. Consideration is given for their greeting card treatment over the last year.

Anne Toms’ Yarmouth Gallery

Emporium, Leckhampton

Highworth Emporium, Highworth

No. 14, Ampthill

Papilio at Heritage, Thornbury SPONSORED BY

Paprika, Bath and Chippenham

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Best Greeting Card

Small Multiple (4-20 Stores) Criteria: Retailers with four to 20 shops, excluding department stores, which have shown excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: range of greeting cards stocked, product knowledge, customer service offered, shop environment created, marketing, display and competitive edge.

3 Wishes, Broadstone, Ferndown, Lymington, Ringwood and Verwood

House of Cards, Caversham, Chalfont St Peter, Kidlington, Thatcham, Tring, Wallingford and Woodley

Mooch, Olney, Northampton (x2), Rushden Lakes and Towcester

Postmark, Balham, Blackheath, Chiswick, East Dulwich and Greenwich

Zo and Co, Cheadle, Didsbury, Knutsford and Marple SPONSORED BY

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Find more shoppers and be chosen more often

With real, behavioural insight from over 100,000 shoppers across all retail channels, Worldpanel Plus can help you find and maintain growth in the greeting cards market.

Contact us today Christine Bradford Business Development Director, Kantar Christine.Bradford@Kartar.com +44 (0) 7785417097

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Best Department Store

Retailer of Greeting Cards Criteria: Open to individual independent department stores as well as groups. Where the department store has a number of branches, the award can be given to a specific branch or to the group depending on the nominations. Each contender should show excellence right across the greeting card retail spectrum over the last year, including: product range, product knowledge, staff training, customer care, marketing and promotion as well as a commitment to the greeting card sector.

Atkinsons, Sheffield

Austins, Newton Abbot

Fenwick Group

Goulds, Dorchester

John Lewis & Partners

Morleys Stores Group

SPONSORED BY

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The GreATesT COLLeCTiOn OF GreeTinG CArDs in The WOrLD PG LIVE 2022 is proud to be a sponsor of The Retas 2021

Congratulations to all the fantabulous Retas finalists... You’re all our favourites!

PG Live 2022 Tuesday 7 - Wednesday 8 June Business Design Centre, London +44 (0) 1635 297070 www.progressivegreetingslive.com @PGLiveLondon #pglive2022

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The FuTure OF GreeTinGs Book your free tickets now www.progressivegreetingslive.com

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Best Supermarket

Retailer of Greeting Cards Criteria: Open to multiple or independent supermarkets could be nominated. Each should demonstrate excellence across the greeting card retail spectrum, product range, customer care, marketing, display as well as a commitment to the greeting card sector over the last year.

Asda

Booths

Morrisons

Sainsbury’s

Tesco SPONSORED BY

Waitrose & Partners

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GO WILD for the Retas! Congratulations and good luck to all the finalists, from everyone at

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Best Non-Specialist Multiple Retailer of Of Greeting Cards (4+Stores) Criteria: Open to all varietal stores, gift shops, fashion outlets and mixed multiples with four branches or more. Candidates should demonstrate excellence in range of greeting card products stocked, marketing and display as well as commitment to the card sector.

Between the Lines, 15 stores in the South

Gee Tee’s, five stores in the North

Lark, six stores in London

Oliver Bonas, 75+ stores in the UK

Waterstones, 280+ stores in the UK

WHSmith, 1,100+ stores in the UK

SPONSORED BY

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paperlink P aperlink w o uld like to congr atul ate th e w o nderful R E TAS ’ no mi nees and wi sh them all t he very best of l uck !

Tel : 0 2 0 75 82 8 24 4

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Best Specialist Multiple Retailer

of Greeting Cards (20+Stores) Criteria: Retailers with a chain of greeting card shops of more than 20 branches (excluding department stores and supermarkets) could be nominated. Excellence in all areas across the retail spectrum over the last year, including: product range, product knowledge, staff training, customer care, marketing and promotion, window and product display as well as commitment to the greeting card sector.

Card Factory, 1,000+ stores in the UK

Cards Direct, 37 stores in the UK

Cardzone, 180+ stores in the UK

Clintons, 260+ stores in the UK

Paperchase, 125+ stores in the UK

Scribbler, 35 stores in the UK

SPONSORED BY

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Best Garden Centre Retailer of

Greeting Cards - Independent (1-4 centres)

Criteria: Open to all disciplines of garden centres – be they independent or multiple. Each should demonstrate a commitment and knowledge of greeting cards being retailed within a garden centre. Consideration is given for their greeting card treatment over the last year.

Bernaville Nurseries, Cowley, Exeter

Fron Goch, Caernarfon

Frosts, Woburn Sands, Willington, Brampton and Millets Farm

Monkton Elm Garden Centre, Taunton

Plantsplus Garden Centre, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne SPONSORED BY

RHS Garden Centres, Harlow Carr, Hyde Hall, Rosemoor and Wisley

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Best Garden Centre Retailer of

Greeting Cards - Multiple or group Criteria: Open to all disciplines of garden centres – be they independent or multiple. Each should demonstrate a commitment and knowledge of greeting cards being retailed within a garden centre. Consideration is given for their greeting card treatment over the last year.

Blue Diamond Group, 37 centres in the UK

Haskins, five centres in the South

Dobbies, 70+ centres in the UK

Klondyke & Strikes, 22 centres in the UK

Otter Garden Centres, seven centres in the South West SPONSORED BY

(5+ centres)

Longacres, five centres in the South

Squires, 16 centres in the south

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Best Greeting Card

Retailer Initiative Criteria: Open to retailers of greeting cards for a specific development or initiative that has been instrumental in increasing retail growth of greeting card sales and sustaining an interest in the shop and greeting cards in the last year, consideration is given for their greeting card treatment over the last year.

Calladoodles, Carshalton, for its 10th Anniversary programme

Earlybird, Stoke Newington, for its Hope Programme

Little Boat Gifts, Brightlingsea, for The Brightlingsea Badge Challenge

My Beautiful Caravan, Stonehaven, for its Pay It Forward activity

Red Card, Petworth, for its Brief Request charity initiative

Swagger, Chipping Sodbury, for its Valentine’s Windows of Caring

SPONSORED BY

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Best Greeting Card Service

Based Wholesaler Criteria: Both single and multiple sited wholesale operations could be nominated. Each should show excellence in areas across the card spectrum over the last year, including: product range, product knowledge, staff training, customer care, marketing and promotion as well as a commitment to the greeting card sector.

Archway Cards, Norwich

BGC Wholesale, nine branches

Card and Party World, Cardiff

Crosswear Trading, Enfield

Greetings House, Walsall

Jackson’s, Sheffield

SPONSORED BY

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Greeting Card Retailer of the Year Criteria: All the winners of The Retas awards are truly great greeting card retailers. This award goes to the ‘greatest of the great’ of these retailers - a retailer that has truly excelled in all aspects of greeting card retailing. Winners of all The Retas categories are contenders for this award.

Above: In 2019, the last time The Retas awards took place, Blue Diamond Group was proclaimed Greeting Card Retailer of the Year. Blue Diamond’s Angie Goosen, whose buying remit included greeting cards then, was presented with the trophy by Karen Mace, co-founder and co-owner of The Art File, sponsor of this award category.

2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012

– Blue Diamond Group – Paperchase – Postmark, London – Waterstones – 3 Wishes – M&P Cards – Paperchase – Mayther

2011 – 2010 – 2009 – 2008 – 2007 – 2006 – 2005 –

Bijou, Buckie Penmark Celebrations, Carlisle Scribbler House of Cards Papyrus, Glasgow Celebrations, Carlisle

But which retailer will clinch this top Retas title for 2021? SPONSORED BY

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The GreATesT COLLeCTiOn OF GreeTinG CArDs in The WOrLD

Here’s what people thought of the 2021 show! Well, that has to be the best come back show of all time! We have definitely missed the excitement of PG Live! Miles Robinson, co-owner of House of cards, seven shops in the Home Counties

We had a wonderful time at PG Live. It was really great to be out meeting brands again and seeing new ranges in person! Steph Lloyd buyer for Utility

SAVE THE DATE Don’t miss PG Live 2022

Tuesday 7 - Wednesday 8 June Business Design Centre, London +44 (0) 7734 111633 www.progressivegreetingslive.com @PGLiveLondon #pglive2022

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What a warm and welcoming show. PG Live was the perfect kickstart to trade shows for us. Mark Janson-Smith, managing director of Postmark, a group of five shops in London

The FuTure OF GreeTinGs Book your frEE TickETS now www.progressivegreetingslive.com

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MAX PUBLISHING LTD T: 0207 700 6740 WWW.THERETASAWARDS.CO.UK PROGRAMME EXQUISITELY PRINTED BY METHOD UK SUPPORTERS OF THE RETAS T: MATTHEW PAYNE ON 020 7691 0921 WWW.THISISMETHOD.CO.UK

#RETAS21 Follow the action on Twitter: @Prog_Greetings