Belfast Telegraph

Hillmount puts down new roots in Ards

By Rachel Martin

Family-owned garden centre Hillmount has announced it will open a third branch this autumn as part of a £1m expansion plan.

It's expected the chain's third store will create 25 jobs when it opens in the grounds of a former church in Newtownards, Co Down.

The 10,000 sq ft retail store will showcase 30,000 gardening product lines, including a Weber barbecue section and garden furniture and will also include a 55-seater restaurant.

Hillmount was founded 77 years ago by Hill Mercer and his wife Lily as a market gardening business growing vegetables to sell at markets in Belfast.

Since then, four generations of the Mercer family have been involved in running the business and today, the firm employs almost 100 people across its two stores. The newest branch will be based at the former Thriving Life Church on the Movilla Road.

Alan Mercer, managing director of Hillmount, said: "Now is the perfect time for us to expand our business for the next generation and we are excited to be setting down roots in Ards, a town my mother Edith has always considered to be her home shopping town having grown up in Greyabbey."

Belfast Telegraph