Our Business Story.
Hello, thank you for visiting our website. I’m Sophie and along with my husband Simon, I own More Than Just A Gift at Narborough Hall. Our shop is our shared passion and we have worked together on it for the last 25 years, supported by our wonderful little team.
Although we love this business so much, neither of us ever imagined that we’d go into retail. Back in 1993 we met on the very first night of Freshers Week at the University of Sheffield. I was studying Archaeology & Prehistory, Simon was doing Law, so you see, no intentions of working in a shop back then!
A year before this, my parents, Paul & Wendy, had opened a Gallery in the front rooms of our home. Mum and Dad had bought Narborough Hall in 1976 as a dilapidated wreck and spent the next few decades restoring it but it was a classic money pit. They were both teachers and the demands of the house meant they always had to generate extra money on the side. Opening a Gallery was a idea for the house to generate an income to help cover the maintenance. They sold paintings, some vintage and antique items as well as a few cards and gifts.
I’d always been fascinated by the gift side of the business and was really involved in the set up and running of it while I still lived at home. After I left for Uni I’d help out in all the holidays and soon Simon came with me, then he started dabbling too!
We graduated in 1996 and started applying for jobs. In the meantime, we carried on helping with the business. We had loads of ideas and started trying them out. We increased the cards and gifts dramatically, repainted, installed new displays, designed a logo, and did lots and lots of marketing! Soon, things began to take off. What had been just offsetting some of the costs of running the house was now beginning to actually make money!
Soon it became clear that we were onto a good thing. My parents retired and Simon and I have continued to build the business. Luckily, Simon is a technical whizz so he has been at the forefront of creating our online More Than Just A Gift, where you can browse our whole collection of thousands of beautiful gift ideas.
It’s our mission to make giving easy for you so, whether you visit us in person or online, we make certain you'll always find the perfect present.
If you need any help at all, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us 0116 286 6885. We are ready to assist you.