Something for everyone

Jo Preece, owner of Jolies Fleurs florist in the heart of Thornbury, has lived and worked in the area for more than 20 years. We asked her to describe what makes her job in this flourishing market town so special.

There’s never a dull moment in my job – always a story to be told while a bouquet is created, and there’s laughter; lots of laughter. I see so many types of customers, from a six-year-old coming in to choose a posy for their mum’s birthday, to a 90-year-old selecting flowers for their 70th wedding anniversary.

As a florist, I have a connection with the community. I’m there at the beginning of life, and sadly at the end of life too – and all the bits in between, sometimes magical and sometimes difficult. But that idea of being able to give something to someone and make them smile, that’s what it’s all about.

Why did I choose to set up my business here? I was a teacher, but felt I had another adventure in me – and I chose Thornbury because it’s a growing community with strong roots, and a collection of locals who appreciate flowers, gardening and giving.

The town is vibrant all year round – but for me it really comes to life at Christmas, with beautiful window displays and magical lights, and again in the summer during Thornbury in Bloom when the whole town is bursting with colour. There’s a relaxed vibe, a friendly nature, and we all support each other. Community spirit is so important here, encouraging wellbeing and championing all sorts of lifestyles. Individuality is embraced, and the whole town is inclusive. It’s what makes Thornbury special.