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NEWS RELEASE No: 1650229 MAY 2015

Tidings announced as new retail partner at Westonbirt Arboretum.

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Westonbirt Shop

A new retail partner for the shop at the Forestry Commission’s National Arboretum at Westonbirt has been announced.

Tidings, a locally renowned card, gift and confectionery shop based in Cirencester has been awarded the contract through a competitive process.

Owners Kim Ralph and Steve Cole have a background in attraction retail experience working for the RHS at Rosemoor and later at Hestercombe Gardens in Somerset, which have given them valuable insights into the sector.

Kim Ralph, joint owner of Tidings said:

“We are so excited about this new project – the arboretum is such a prestigious site, attracting a huge and diverse range of visitors.  

Because we are a small, independent company we can move swiftly to meet the needs of our customers and we can work with much smaller, local suppliers and artisan producers, to ensure a unique product range to surprise and delight our customers”.   

The Westonbirt Shop has had a full re-fit and been equipped with a fresh look in time for its official opening on 29 May 2015.

Visitors to the Westonbirt Shop can expect to find a large range of local and regional foodie gifts; preserves, honey, confectionery and biscuits alongside an expanded toy section, field and wildlife guides and a fresh range of affordable homeware and gifts.

Paul Cody, Head of Visitor Attraction at Westonbirt commented:

“We are really pleased to have Tidings on board here at Westonbirt. They are experienced retail franchise holders and are dedicated to making sure the Westonbirt shop meets the needs of our visitors. We are sure that they will provide both an excellent variety and a great level of service.”

The Westonbirt Shop will officially open from May 29th 2015.

The shop opening hours will be Mon- Fri 9-5, Sat 9-6 and Sun 11-4.

For more information please visit


Image attached:  The Westonbirt Shop, credit Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, Forestry Commission.

  1. Westonbirt, The National Arboretum is managed by the Forestry Commission and is renowned worldwide for its tree and shrub collection. Home to five national collections, the arboretum covers 243 hectares (600 acres) and contains nearly 15,000 labelled specimens. Visitor numbers are 350,000 a year, with a membership of over 27,000. Westonbirt Arboretum was established in the 1850s by wealthy landowner Robert Holford and later developed by his son George Holford. Unlike many arboretums, Westonbirt is laid out according to aesthetic appeal rather than scientific or geographical criteria. Visit
  2. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment.  Further information can be found at
  3. The Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum was formed in 1985. The charity’s objects are to support the National Arboretum in promoting public understanding of the crucial role of trees to the environment and society. It is funded by membership receipts from over 28,000 members, other fundraising, and the use of the Great Oak Hall for events and activities. The Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum is a registered charity (no. 293190). More information at  


Emily Pryor, Communications Manager, Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, on 0300 067 4851 or email: