2021 – Staying Strong And Moving Forward!

Care in the Garden’s Operation Geranium also came back into force from May until July 2021, and during those 8 weeks Age UK IOW volunteers delivered Geranium Gift Packs with Postcards, Fridge stickers, plants and information to 400 elderly Island residents across every area of the Isle of Wight. NBA businesses joined in by distributing postcards to customers again.


In the intersted of keeping Newport town centre as blooming colourful as possible. Newport Business Association has teamed up, once again, with Care In The Garden to keep the good vibes going.

The initiative, titled Blooming Well Together In Newport, is to invite businesses and organisations to display a hanging basket, supplied and even fitted as needed by Care In The Garden. All the baskets will be following a blue, yellow and white colour scheme. These are very much Newport FC colours, but also connect with the NHS (blue and white) and a feeling of positivity (yellow). 

John Goodenough from Care In The Garden comments: “We are delighted to be involved in this project and a chance to bring joy to people visiting Newport town centre. We’ve priced the baskets very modestly at just £25 or for just £10 more we’ll even fit it for you!“

To add more colour, several primary schools across Newport have also been involved in drawing and colouring their flowers. This artwork will be displayed in shop windows throughout the town.

Co-ordinating this whole initiative is NBA member Fiona Brown, who owns The Dapper Chap on Upper St James Street.

We have been blown away by the amount of support our beloved Newport businesses have shown for the Blooming Well Together initiative! So many of you have gotten involved and shown that you really care about our town centre and want to brighten it up for the shoppers and regular local visitors.

We would like to thank the following businesses:

Peach Vegan Cafe, The Dapper Chap, Arnold Heal Gun Shop, Bernard Shoes, Caffe Isola, Dragonfly, Eldridges Solicitor, Forget Me Not, Ape Vape, Skintrade, Vodafone, Love Running, Favian Barbers, Hose Rhodes Dickson, Farmhouse Fayre, Fine & Country/Pittis, Island Hire Centre, Live Wire Electricals, Ralphs Crock Shop, Red Squirrel Property, Grace’s Bakery, Sweet Charlies, Hurst, Barrhead Travel, Southern Vectis, The nail & Beauty Room and Total Tanning.


You are all wonderful! And a very big thank you to Fiona Brown for putting in the leg work and gathering up all of the current participants.

You may remember, back in November we posted about the fantastic Wight Gift Card being released in Cowes and sponsored by the wonderful folks over at Wightfibre?  Well, today we have some great news!…

This scheme was so very well received and has continued to bring in that real sense of Island identity and many many more local businesses are getting involved.

For those who don’t remember, here is a recap of this brilliant scheme.

The Wight Gift Card works like a local currency, with each gift card a pre-paid Mastercard that can be redeemed at registered businesses on the Isle of Wight, for online purchases and in stores.

Shoppers can buy the card as a gift, and know that with a Wight Gift Card their recipient can choose their own selection from many of the Isle of Wight’s best-known brands and producers, right across the Island. The new gift card scheme follows on from previous shop local initiatives on the Island such as Fiver Fest and Let’s Buy Local. The card is supported by the Isle of Wight Council, and will support the Islands post-COVID business recovery strategy, in a bid to encourage residents and visitors to shop locally and keep their money on the Island.

Email Wight Gift Card – wightgiftcard@iow.gov.uk -and we do the rest.  As mentioned there are still free places in Newport and it only costs just 50p per month! Cheaper than a packet of crisps!  The scheme is operating for a minimum of 3 years and so we invoice for £18.00 when you join.

Accepting Wight Gift Card payments from customers is very simple.

The Wight Gift Card is a private label pre-paid Mastercard and does not feature Chip and Pin. It is accepted by swiping the card through the magstripe reader on your card terminal. If the card terminal doesn’t have a swipe function, you can process a card-not-present transaction using the 16-digit Mastercard number, expiry date, and CVV number on the back of the card.

You will receive the full value of the card – the only charge is the standard rate for accepting a Mastercard debit card.

This really is a marvellous opportunity to encourage local customers to keep their spends on the island and with local businesses!