THEY could be excused for pres-enting themselves with flowers this week.
For staff at Monica F Hewitt Florists in Middlewood Road are celebrating 40 years in business and 17-year-old assistant April Bell making the shortlist for the UK Retail Apprentice of the Year.
Monica Hewitt, who opened the shop 40 years ago this week, is now semi-retired and her daughter, Helen Murray, who started as a Saturday girl, took over six years ago.
Manager Annie Valentine has been part of the team for all but one of those years.
April came to the shop, which is opposite Hillsborough Park, on work experience and joined on leaving school. Working under the supervision of The Source at Meadowhall, she is on a shortlist of three for the apprenticeship awards ceremony in London today (Thursday).
“She is just such a hard worker and everybody she meet adores her,” said Helen.
Photographs from the 40 years are being displayed in the shop and customers are being offered cupcakes to help celebrate the anniversary.
Staple business remains weddings and funerals and the florists have kept in bloom despite many other independent businesses drooping.
“You have to always keep at it but things are good at the moment,” said Helen. “You try to ignore the doom and gloom around you.
“We have been here 40 years and there is no reason why we can’t continue for another 40 years.”