"There has been a huge demand for the protective screens, particularly from salons, where they help these small businesses to make use of the limited space they have."
A Midlands event-styling business has turned its expertise to creating protective screens to support restaurants and salons re-opening across the country.
Table Art, based in Leamington, specialises in creating eye-catching centrepieces and event art, but with the events industry coming to a standstill has re-purposed its operations to provide protection from Covid-19.
Owner Gary Martin launched Shield UK and has been providing screens to barbers, hairdressers, restaurants and offices to keep clients and staff safe, in spaces where social distancing can be difficult.
The fast-pack, foldable screens are easily movable and storable and are now being used in businesses locally in Warwickshire and across the country.
Products range from countertop screens and foamex screens, to the clear flat-packable screens and social distancing floor vinyls.
Table Art works closely with leading accountancy firm Burgis & Bullock, which has offices in Leamington, Nuneaton, Rugby and Stratford-upon-Avon, and has been supporting the business with furlough and payroll guidance throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
The business has also launched its new ‘Salon Hub’, adapting an idea planned for its famed table centrepieces.
The innovative hub allows guest to charge their phones, whilst also providing a facility for business owners to transmit offers and adverts on a LCD screen.
Gary said that their normal business is based around a packed events schedule and with that schedule cleared Table Art knew it had to adapt in order to mitigate the impact of the pandemic.
Table Art works with Pride of Britain, Tesco, The Post Office and many more.
“The events industry was the first to go and will likely be the last to recover from the pandemic, so we have adjusted our operations to be able to provide new range of products and services and support the businesses until events are allowed to return by government,” said Gary.
“We received a £25,000 grant from Warwick District Council which was a big help but we knew in order to stay afloat we had to diversify and try something different.
“There has been a huge demand for the protective screens, particularly from salons, where they help these small businesses to make use of the limited space they have.
“As more orders come in, we’re able to bring staff back in from furlough on a part-time basis. It’s different but so far it’s been a success.
“Businesses are taking their first steps out of lockdown and we’re pleased to be able to help them return safely.”
Sean Farnell, Partner at Burgis & Bullock, added: “We have worked with Table Art for many years. Gary has always looked to identify new avenues to further their business and that attitude has been a clear benefit for them during the pandemic.
“He has diversified the operations with great success which will protect jobs and ensure the business has a sound platform to build from when the events industry starts back up.
“Table Art are a brilliant example of the entrepreneurial mind-set we have seen from many small business owners over the last few months and we look forward to supporting them moving forward.”