Ilkley is an incredible place to live and work and not least, because of its sense of community. Running a popular local store means we’re always meeting new people and chatting with old friends. With a high street that has so much to offer, nothing beats wandering around our town’s incredible range of shops and seeing so many familiar, returning faces. That’s the thing about Ilkley, we have such a sense of community, even those visiting feel like they belong – and love to keep coming back.

While our in-store customers pop in for a catch up when the little ones are getting fitted for school shoes or picking out their dream holiday trainers, we also wanted you, our online community, to meet the team…so welcome to our new blog!

This week we’re introducing you to one half of our mother and daughter management team, Helen.

What’s your role at Poppy Red?

I look after the ‘back office’ of the store, staying on top of book keeping and the tasks that keep our business running and thriving! But you’ll often find me working in the shop on a Sunday as it’s a great opportunity to catch up with customers and keep my hand in with the new stock and store layout.

What’s your favourite part of the job?

Although my daughter Jenny and I have different roles, we always unite when we’re selecting new stock. What mother and daughter wouldn’t love hours of researching and buying new shoes? It couldn’t be more satisfying if we were buying for ourselves! It’s a real responsibility getting the right mix of quality and style that mums will approve of and kids will really love and we’re very particular about what brands we stock. That’s where being at different life stages really comes in useful… we balance each others’ tastes and opinions!

What do you get up to outside of work?

I love walking my dog (she’s named Poppy too!) – and make time to get out with her every day. We’re so lucky here because we’ve got the beautiful Ilkley Moor, the less strenuous – but equally stunning riverside – or even just a walk around the town is good for the soul and a wonderful wind down at the end of the day.

I also volunteer with Burley in Wharfedale Brownies, working with a group of 7–10 year old girls on fun, weekly activities. With my daughters now grown up and rapidly growing up, it’s a great way of keeping involved with all the fun stuff that you start to realise you’re missing out on when your own become more independent.

Do you have a favourite shoe?

Anyone who knows me, knows I’m rarely out of a black patent court shoe – a real classic. However, on shop days, my current ‘Poppy favourite’ is the Geox ballet pump in white and rose gold; sparkly and stylish but perfect ‘on your feet’ day wear!