Hawick shopkeeper Kat Yule announces exciting expansion plan
A popular grocer at the heart of her community in Hawick has the keys to her new kingdom as she prepares to expand her business empire.
It was more than five years ago when Kat Yule opened up Kat’s Corner Shop in Myreslaw Green.
There have been a few setbacks along the way – most notably an attempted armed robbery involving a knife-wielding attacker.
But year on year, through her appetite for hard work and a determination to succeed, the shop has grown more successful, with Kat offering a cornucopia of goodies.
The shop is tiny with customers often comparing it to an Aladdin’s cave and questioning how Kat manages to stock so much inside it.
The corner shop will continue to trade but now she has purchased a vacant premises directly opposite it in Gladstone Street.
It’s four times the size of her present shop and Kat’s not intending to open it as a retail outlet until early next year.
Meanwhile, the community-minded retailer plans to stage Halloween and Christmas celebrations there for local people to enjoy.
She said: “The property was previously Eric’s which sold mechanical things. It has been closed for a couple of years.
"It’s going to be an extension of what I offer already and allow us to get my van on the road, to go around the doors with groceries. Because I had nowhere for my extra stock I found myself using my van and a shipping container as well. Now I’ll be able to get my van out on the road to serve the community.
"The aim of the game is to employ more staff. We have six adults working and six paperboys and girls as well and we’ll look to give jobs to folk when we can.
"My wee shop is very secure and I have my alcohol licence there. Across at the new premises I will be able to provide a variety of things.
"Before it opens we’re hoping to utilise it in the meantime for events at Christmas with Santa coming and hand out gifts and let folks have a wee dance and sing. We can maybe also get some local traders in and get everyone together.
"The business gets better every year and I try to introduce new things. This year I got the Mister Whippy soft scoop ice cream machine in. I like to bring new things in and we get folk travelling to us from Gala, from Langholm, because of the desserts and sweeties and party things we sell.
“We also sell sweets online which is a new craze since lockdown so this additional space will allow us to stock more and get them picked and packed.
"Folk say the present shop is like an Aladdin’s cave and ask if it has expanding walls. “Now we have the chance to offer the community even more.”