Our Story

Premier Plants of Ledsham | Our Story

1980s: Getting Started

Back in 1984, Frank Francis had the bold idea to purchase a disused petrol station and convert it into the Sycamore Garden Centre, to be run by himself and his son, Mike.  The first day’s takings were just £17, but the business never looked back and by 1988 plans were underway for an expansion – the first of many over the years!

1990s: A Change in Direction

In December 1989, Frank and Mike purchased Sutton’s Nurseries.  Mike had a passion for growing plants and wanted to venture into the wholesale sector.  His first crops in 1990 were celery and cut flowers, and as the nursery rapidly flourished it was able to supply Sycamore and other garden centres with a selection of bedding plants.

By the mid-1990s, Sutton’s Nurseries’ plants were featuring at national trade shows, such as Glee and Four Oaks.

The business continued to thrive, and a new despatch building and offices were built to help with the growing number of orders from its large independent customer base and national garden centre chains.

2000s: Growing Success

In 2003, Sutton’s Nurseries opened its gates to the public for the first time.  It traded from the back of an old wagon and had a small retail space of just three poly tunnels.  From these humble beginnings, Premier Plants of Ledsham would be born.

Growing top quality and beautiful plants has always been at the forefront of the business and remains so to this day.  But in 2009, the family recognised the need to diversify in order to keep up with customers’ expectations.  Work on Hosta Coffee cafe began, providing visitors with somewhere to relax and enjoy great coffee and local produce.

Premier Plants of Ledsham became a limited company in 2010 and development continued with the addition of a new chemical shop and an expansion to Hosta Coffee.  However, by 2015 further retail space was needed to accommodate growing visitor demand and extend the range of stock available.  Last year saw even more work, with the addition of a new glasshouse for palms and acers.

2020 & Beyond

“At Premier Plants we never rest on our laurels.  Improving and expanding our retail space is a key priority, so we’re able to offer a unique experience to all our visitors.  As we look forward, the Nursery will continue to be a huge part of our family-run business and we’ll maintain our focus on ensuring we always offer the highest quality and best variety of plants available.”

Michael, David & Fahye

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