Nursery Online - Latest News
Uncertain future?

I’m writing this half listening to the news on the latest Brexit fiasco. Whatever your views on whether we should stay or go, the uncertainty has an appalling effect on business.

However, it is important to see beyond the end of the month. If we fail to plan, we plan to fail! Babies are still being born and parents will still need pushchairs, car seats and cots. They may not buy the most expensive and many more will buy second-hand, but there will be some who will be buying and it is important that we are there for them.

Which brings me to the second most important event of the month – the Harrogate International Nursery Fair. If you are in the nursery trade, there’s no excuse for you to not to be there. The show is now fully booked and there are a lot of newcomers exhibiting. Have they got the perfect product for your shop? You’ll never know unless you come.

Exhibitors really must shout about what they are showing. The two print magazines are out now and it is very clear that exhibitors have cut back on their advertising. How can retailers know it is worth stopping by your stand, indeed how are they to know whether it is worth coming at all? Are you just hoping they'll spend some of their valuable time as they wander past, examining your stand to see if it's something they might be interested in?

The trade is changing. More parents are buying online, often direct from the supplier. Consumers are not getting the help they need to make sure they buy the products that are right for them. All they can do is attempt to emulate the celebrities who are paid to say how wonderful the brand is. Retailers are not getting the support they need from their suppliers and many of those (especially the smaller ones with innovative and brilliant products) are not getting support from retailers either.

We NEED a vibrant, relevant retail trade. That starts with supporting the UK’s only trade show. Come, look, talk. Dare I say help?

See you there!

- Cathy

PS: There’s JUST time to shout about your products. The Nursery Online Harrogate Show Preview will go out on Tuesday so how about crafting around 250 words and finding a couple of images and sending them to us. If you need help, just ask. I’ll be around all weekend!

April will be upon us before long. We have two Spotlights for you – Nappies & Changing has a copydate of April 1st (no April Fools please!!) and Wheeled goods has a copydate of the 15th.

Make sure your products are included, not only in what we send to the trade but also use the opportunity to reach out to consumers through

As usual, ask Lyn or Jane. Their contact details are, 01304 374169 or 07971 700979 or Jane on

Clippasafe further improves and expands safety range for 2019

Clippasafe, the experts in home safety for over 60 years, are to introduce some brand-new products to their range this Spring and unveil some new and improved designs for popular existing products.

Popular home safety staples including Corner Cushions, Cabinet Locks and the Oven Door Lock have been carefully redesigned to be more ergonomic and tamper resistant, reducing the likelihood of children disabling the fastening mechanisms and giving them a more attractive appearance in modern homes.

New to the car safety range are the improved Child View Mirror and brand-new Car Seat Security Clip. The Child View Mirror allows drivers to see their children clearly in the back seat without turning around or relying on or adjusting the rear-view mirror. The Car Seat Security Clip is a simple but effective product that fixes between shoulder straps on a child’s car seat and prevents them from climbing out between the straps.

Managing Director Roger Cheetham is keen to respond to the demands of parents and the curiosity of toddlers and young children who can inadvertently find themselves in dangerous situations: “Where a risk is identified, we want to ensure that we’re one of the first to provide a solution and that’s why our range is always evolving. It’s also important that we keep improving our products to make them as safe and user friendly as possible, as well as giving them a fresh, modern look.”
Clippasafe’s new and improved range can be pre-ordered by contacting the sales team.

Tel: 0115 9211 899

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More than 130 brands present a sell-out show

Harrogate International Nursery Fair reports that exhibitor space at the UK’s only baby trade show is now sold out and confirms that over 130 favourite brands will be attending.

More than 30 companies are new exhibitors for 2019 – either attending for the first time, or returning after a break – and these, together with participants in the New Product Showcase, mean that retailers and buyers are guaranteed to see plenty of fresh new ranges to get excited about.

Adrian Sneyd, show organiser, said: “We are delighted that industry impetus has returned for 2019 and the show is not only enjoying the continued participation of brands renowned for supporting independent trade; but also the return of established brands which have been absent for a while and some interesting ‘new to the market’ companies too.”

Harrogate International Nursery Fair, which takes place at the Harrogate Convention Centre from 24th to 26th March 2019 is more than just an ‘exhibition’: it is the fundamental UK networking and business event of the year, supported by all of the industry’s trade press and the UK’s Baby Products Association.

Whilst visitors will get to see the latest up-and-coming baby products, they can also network and catch up on the latest industry news; and gain important information on market climate and trends which may affect their business. Adrian continues: “The Baby Products Association has once again organised a great line up of speakers for the Seminar Programme and also the BANTA and Concept & Innovation Awards which add an element of anticipation to events. So, all in all I believe we have a pretty full three-days on the cards.”

More information, free registration and exhibitor list are available on the website at

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JMDA wins Gold at the International Design Awards

JMDA Design are celebrating the news that their innovative foldable highback booster design for mifold has been awarded Gold in the 12th Annual International Design Awards (IDA).

One of the most respected Design Awards in the world, this accolade further demonstrates JMDA’s talent and specialist skill in the design and development of advanced child restraint systems (C.R.S).

One of the world’s most compact highback booster seats, JMDA’s innovative design of the hifold for Israel based company Carfoldio (mifold), radically challenges the established design of highback boosters, by providing a forward-thinking, compact and portable solution which meets the highly mobile needs of today’s consumer. The IDA’s Product Design of the Year Award recognises the efforts of talented design teams who create practical solutions to solve a problem and make life easier for the consumer. Under the ‘Children’s Products’ category which encompasses ‘Car Seats & Accessories’, JMDA are proud winners of the Gold Award for this portable highback booster, which is three times smaller than a regular booster. JMDA were praised by the judging panel for the ‘smart idea’ and considerations of modern lifestyle, transportation trends and child safety.

Derrick Barker, JMDA’s Creative and Managing Director explains, “We are thrilled to be IDA Gold winners for our inventive design of the foldable highback booster seat. This is a fantastic achievement for the team! Not only does it put us ahead of our competitors and concrete our name as a world leading designer of Child Restraint Systems and juvenile products, but it further demonstrates our strong creative skills and understanding of the complex and ever-changing CRS landscape.” He adds, “The winning design offers a smooth and seamless user experience, whilst still offering the same protection, safety and comfort for the child as they grow; from 15kg all the way up to 36kg, to the height of 150cm and the age of 12-years old.”

Jon Sumroy Inventor and CEO at mifold explains, “After the global success of the original mifold grab-and-go backless booster seat, we wanted to bring the same compact portability to the highback booster category. Derrick and JMDA understood our dreams and vision and applied their design skills, industry experience and expertise to create hifold. They truly deserve this honour for an industry-changing design that will further improve child passenger safety.”

For more information about JMDA Design and for details of their Gold IDA award for their design of foldable highback booster for mifold, please call 01386 426100, or email

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iCandy design pushchair protoype for cardiac patients at Great Ormond Street Hospital

Bradley and Warren Appel, joint CEOs of iCandy, recently visited Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), to see the state-of-the-art modified pushchairs iCandy has generously designed for seriously ill children with cardiac conditions, as part of its charity partnership with Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity (GOSH Charity).

During the visit, iCandy announced it has raised £100,000 for the Charity, to go towards an enclosed isolation recovery bay in the hospital’s newest clinical building. This long-term relationship with GOSH Charity is a cause very close to the heart of the business and forms one of the key pillars of its day to day culture.

Bradley Appel has first-hand experience of GOSH as his granddaughter was treated by the hospital. Whilst there, he visited Bear Ward – which specialises in caring for children with rare and complex cardiac conditions – and decided that iCandy could create a bespoke version of their luxury Strawberry pushchair that could accommodate a patient’s complex medical equipment. GOSH Charity facilitated feedback and comments from the hospital’s nurses, which helped iCandy to design a prototype that would be functional, whilst providing a safe and comfortable environment for children.

Commenting on the partnership, iCandy joint CEO, Bradley Appel said: “As both a family and a family business we are so happy to be working so closely with GOSH and GOSH Charity in order to raise vital funds and to promote awareness of the incredible work that is undertaken there.”

Modifications to the pushchair included adding a basket to hold an oxygen tank, and an adapted harness to allow children who use complex medical equipment to sit in comfort. Space was made to store medical tubes, for example those in connection with a Berlin heart which is used for children who are awaiting a heart transplant, allowing them greater freedom of movement.

Director of Corporate Partnerships at GOSH Charity, Amit Aggarwal, says, “iCandy’s commitment to understanding the needs of the patient is outstanding and one that will have a positive impact for children at GOSH. I also extend a huge congratulations and thank you to the company for raising £100,000 to go towards the enclosed isolation recovery bay. I can’t wait to see what we can achieve together in the next phase of our partnership.”

A plaque at the hospital will now formally recognise iCandy’s fundraising efforts.

iCandy will continue their fundraising into 2019 by donating £10 of every sale made of the iCandy Peach in Dove Grey going towards the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity.

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Hot topics for Harrogate

The retail environment creates a roller coaster of challenges and stocking a fantastic range of products certainly helps to boost your business; but knowing what makes your customers tick and how best to communicate messages to them is vital too.

The Baby Products Association has once again organised a fantastic line up of speakers for its Seminar Programme at Harrogate International Nursery Fair all delivering subjects which can help with business in the nursery industry – whether you are a manufacturer and supplier; or a retailer.

Fraser Bradshaw of creative agency saintnicks will explore the role of brands to consumers and how they can keep their relevance in a world of over-supply, outlining the key steps to strengthening brands and achieving sales growth on and offline. Fraser is a retail private equity investor with over 25 years’ experience in commercial management and strategic marketing and was formerly managing director of global advertising agency McCann Erikson.

Jonathan Watson and Nick Richardson of The Insights People – a market intelligence company specialising in the kids, parent and family sectors work with some of the biggest brands in the world. They will give visitors to Harrogate a heads up on consumer trends in the nursery sector and an insight in how they can engage with consumers effectively and encourage sales in an ever-changing, highly competitive market place.

With the explosion of social media in engagement in recent years, Ross Hewitt of Secret Pie will explain the importance of smart social media planning. His presentation will cover how a retailer can get organised with social media content and begin to create a content plan that will help them to stay focussed on messages to their existing audience as well as attract new followers. He will also explore content ideas and will give suggestions on how to get a person to move from the digital platform into a real-world store.

Finally, BREXIT isn’t far from many of our thoughts and with just a week from the show until the UK intends to leave the European Union, it will no doubt be a hot topic raising a lot of questions. Sara Ludlam from leading law firm 3Volution will explain the possible implications for companies in the nursery industry from a commercial and intellectual property perspective.

The Seminar Theatre is located in Hall Q of the Harrogate Convention Centre and seminars will take place on Sunday 24th and Monday 25th March. Free to attend, full details and times can be found on the website HERE.

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Allison Baby reignites Graco with Vista PR

Allison Baby has appointed Vista PR, experts in the family market, to resurrect the Graco brand in the UK.

Vista will build a vibrant, stand-out social brand that will engage a younger, fashion oriented audience. Smart social campaigns, influencer advocacy and brand building media coverage will drive sales with families.

Lucy Reeves, Client Lead at Vista said: “We’re going to create buzz for Graco. We are clear on its place within the Allison Baby portfolio and are confident that we can carve a distinct, profitable positioning for it in the UK market.”

David Welsh, Managing Director, Allison Baby UK, said: “Vista showed us that they understand the Graco brand and their expertise in brand building communications will help us to achieve our business objectives. 2019 is about laying the foundations for fast growth in 2020, with product development and brand awareness a key focus. We know that Vista is the agency to support us in this exciting journey ahead. We’re looking forward to the partnership.”

Graco fits perfectly into Vista PR’s portfolio of quality, leading brands with adventure and innovation at their core, which includes Micro Scooters, LittleLife, Babyzen, Peg Perego and Luxury Family Hotels.

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Is your brand The Best For Baby for 2019? Independent UK product review site reveals Top Brands for 2019

Independent ratings and review website, The Best For Baby, reveals its updated listings for 2019. Collated from ongoing real-time feedback from UK parents across all areas of pregnancy and parenting, the new data welcomes several new brands to the number one spot.

With 200,000 product ratings and 100,000 reviews across 300 products in 30 categories, The Best for Baby is fast-becoming the go-to resource for UK parents researching what to buy. Covering everything from car seats and pushchairs to teething and weaning, each category has a No. 1 ‘Best Brand’. There is also a ‘Top 100’ where all baby brands are compared across categories to find out which parents say is best overall. All ratings are 100% independent by parents for parents.

Research show that for every 100 pregnant women who see a brand rated No.1 on The Best For Baby, 18% of these will go on to purchase that brand that otherwise wouldn’t have.

The No.1 ‘Best Brands’ for 2019:

  • Best Maternity Clothes – ASDA
  • Best Nursing Bras – ASDA
  • Best Baby Pain Relief – Calpol
  • Best Baby Toiletries – Child's Farm
  • Best Feeding Bottles – MAM
  • Best Pushchairs – Maxi-Cosi
  • Best Online Pregnancy & Baby Shopping – Amazon
  • Best Formula – Aptamil
  • Best Baby Toothpaste – Aquafresh
  • Best High Street Pregnancy & Baby Shopping – ASDA
  • Best Baby Activity – Baby Sensory
  • Best Baby Bouncer – Fisher Price
  • Best Baby Toys – Fisher Price
  • Best Travel Cot – Graco
  • Best Highchairs – IKEA
  • Best Soothers – MAM
  • Best Cots – Mamas & Papas
  • Best Slings – Mamas & Papas
  • Best Nappies – Mamia by Aldi
  • Best Wipes – Mamia by Aldi
  • Best Car Seats – Maxi-Cosi
  • Best Breast Pump – Medela
  • Best Baby Clothes – Next
  • Best Sleeping Bags – Sainsbury's
  • Best Pregnancy & Maternity Vitamins & Supplements – Seven Seas
  • Best Baby Teething Medicine – Anbesol Liquid
  • Best Baby Monitor – Angelcare
  • Best Disposable Breast Pads – Lansinoh
  • Best Nipple Cream – Lansinoh
  • Best Baby Foods – Ella’s Kitchen
  • Best Stretch Mark Creams and Oils – Palmer’s
  • Best Nappy Cream – Sudocrem
  • Best Baby Magazine – Mother & Baby
  • Best Baby Club – BabyCentre

Owner of Market Researcher company MumsViews and Creator of The Best for Baby Paul Petrie says: “By getting independent feedback from parents on an ongoing basis, we know that our data is an accurate reflection of the market as it stands right now. The top brands can be proud of their status and it’s fantastic to see some new names securing the top spot!”



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Dragons' Den entrepreneur, Touker Suleyman, buys into baby brand babocush

Dragons’ Den investor and retail entrepreneur, Touker Suleyman, is delighted to confirm his new investment in the babocush, an award-winning comfort cushion that soothes newborn babies.

This move further strengthens the entrepreneur’s commitment to the baby brand market, as it will be his fourth investment alongside other brands Matchstick Monkey, Kokoso and Wool Couture Baby.

The babocush recreates the atmosphere in the womb with a heartbeat sound and gentle vibration, allowing it to relieve gas, colic and reflux and reducing flat head syndrome. Mumpreneur Kerry Nevins invented the babocush as a solution to calming her uncomfortable son. Since marketing her innovative design in 2015, the babocush has taken the market by storm as parents worldwide are raving about the unique design and features, which allow babies to relax, cry less and settle easily.

Touker Suleyman said: “As soon as I met Kerry and saw the babocush in action, I knew it was going to make a big wave in the baby market.

“The babocush has already made its way into the homes of tens of thousands of families, and given its success and appeal, our future plans for the brand are very ambitious. We will be concentrating on helping Kerry to expand the international reach of the product, and to extend the offering of the brand. The road ahead will be an exciting one for babocush.”

Kerry Nevins, said: "I have been overwhelmed by all the success babocush has enjoyed to-date. Hearing parents tell me about the incredible difference that it has made to them in their day-to-day lives has been truly remarkable and humbling. It’s so rewarding knowing that the babocush is helping thousands of families around the world, in the same way it helped me and my family.

“Today marks a massive step in our journey and with Touker and his team on hand, I’m so excited to see what we can achieve for the future of babocush.”

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Step into Spring with Flores: the NEW limited edition print range from Ergobaby

Ergobaby, makers of award-winning, ergonomic baby products, has just released a new, limited edition print range: Flores.

In collaboration with established designer French Bull NYC, the range hails a bold and colourful design featuring vivid floral prints, guaranteed to make the parenting day a whole lot brighter.

The full Flores range:

  • Omni 360 Baby Carrier (£154.90) – the award-winning Ergobaby Omni 360 is suitable from birth and features four carry positions
  • Doll Carrier (£24.90) – doll carrier allowing older siblings to share the babywearing fun while carrying beloved dolls and cuddly toys
  • Swaddler (£19.90) – bright colourful swaddlers, suitable from birth and made with ultra-soft breathable 100% cotton
  • Classic Sleep Bag (£24.90) – an easy-to-use wearable blanket that keeps baby cosy and comfortable
  • On the Move Sleep Bag (£29.90) – unique sleeping bag that enables seamless switching from naptime to playtime and back again

All available from – for more information email

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