By Sam & Dominique - 9th July 2012 7:01am
The Flower Divas – A day in the life of a flower shop
Part One — ‘From Amsterdam to Audlem’
Welcome to our new feature on your local Audlem florists. Please click on the link below the photo and you can read the article packed with photos.
2012 is certainly turning out to be a summer of events and celebrations both locally and nationally.
2012 is also a year for celebration for the Flower Divas as in September we will be celebrating our first Anniversary, not quite a Diamond Jubilee but none the less an important milestone we will be celebrating in true floral style.
In the run up to our first anniversary we will be telling the story of your local Flower shop and what goes on behind the scenes along with a few trade secrets and some interesting facts and figures.
We are so passionate about flowers and our industry and we just want to share a little of that passion!
If you are around in the village on a Tuesday morning then chances are you will have seen ‘The Flying Dutchman’ in the village, a 40 tonnes refrigerated articulated lorry. You will know if you have seen it as it’s impossible to miss stopping the traffic in the village.
Modern technology means that the British Florists are now able to order flowers on line direct from the International flower auctions in Holland.
However we still rely heavily on the Flying Dutchman who is in essence a mobile Wholesaler and our eyes and ears on the ground at the auction.
Lorenz our Dutchman will buy at auction and then travel the country selling flowers to shops and florists around the region. He has a considerable amount of experience and knowledge of both Flowers varieties and availability as well as the workings of the auction itself.
Lorenz spends his week travelling from Holland then around the region and then back again. Lorenz is at the auction early on Monday morning and by midday is on his way to England.
He travels from The Hook of Holland to Hull and then travels to the Northwest with his first stop being in Northwich, then on to Nantwich.
From there he makes his most important stop in Audlem at the Flower Divas before travelling onto North Wales and finishing up on the Wirral and Merseyside on Thursday before travelling back on the ferry on Thursday Pm arriving back in Holland on Friday morning.
For any florist the weekly arrival of the Dutch wagon is one of the highlights of the week. We are both like ‘kids in a sweet shop’ and have to resist the urge not to buy up one of everything.
The lorry is refrigerated and kitted out inside to hold all the flowers and plants in optimum travelling conditions to ensure they all arrive in tip top condition.
The inside of the lorry full to capacity when it comes to Audlem so we really do get the ‘pick of the bunch.’
Some interesting facts:
- The Lorry is the largest artic allowed on the roads in Europe at 16.5 metres long and 40 tonnes.
- The trailer is set at a constant 7 degrees to provide the optimum temperature for cut flowers.
- It costs £800 or 1000 Euros to fill the tank each week and a further £1100 per week for the Ferry crossing.
- The cabin can sleep two people in bunk beds and has all the basics for an overnight stay, but after years on the road Lorenz swaps his lorry for the comfort of a bed and shower at the local Travel Lodge.
Watch this space for our next episode, when we will look at the Flower Auction at Aalsmeer, the ‘Wall Street’ of flowers!
Brought to you by The Flower Divas at 16 The Square Audlem. www.theflowerdivas.co.uk 01270 812434 or follow us on twitter and face book.
Tuesday 17th Jul
Monday 16th Jul
Catalyst Science Discovery Centre, Widnes
4,Hayfields Grove, off Moorsfield Avenue
Audlem Car Park