A hair and beauty salon that was due to open during the first lockdown is having its long-awaited opening event.
Studio 15 in Milford Street was ready to open on April 6 last year, but with the lockdown the business had to wait until July to welcome customers for the first time.
On Saturday (July 31), Mayor of Salisbury Cllr Caroline Corbin will cut the ribbon at the salon’s first opening party.
The evening will involve a charity raffle, with prizes donated by many Salisbury businesses.
Phil Smith has also donated shampoos for goody bags, and cocktails will be provided by Salisbury’s YOYO bar.
Business owner Sophie Cormack, 25, said the opening event is to raise money for Alzheimer’s and dementia support charities.
The cause is close to her heart, as her grandmother died of the illness and her stepfather is currently living with it.
Sophie started as a Saturday girl hairdresser when she was at school and went on to train at the Toni and Guy Academy in London.
Mum Linda Cormack offered her some retirement money so she could take the first step towards opening her own salon.
However, there were many challenges with opening a business during the Covid-19 pandemic.
From making their first move in August 2019, they needed to apply for planning permission because the building is grade listed, a license to offer beauty treatments and undertake building work on the grade listed site.
Linda said: “It was just a big shell with this lovely staircase and lovely beams, and we then had to put up false walls to make cubicles for the beds.
“It was grade listed. We didn’t want to move the old beams, take any of the old character away. We wanted to work with it.”
Doing building work in lockdown presented many challenges – finding plaster, Linda said, was virtually impossible, prices went through the roof and workmen had to self-isolate.
Linda herself painted and cleaned the place: “We weren’t going to give up. We’d come so far.”
Linda added that it was wonderful how businesses in Milford Street have supported the opening of Studio 15: “We want to give a big thank you to everyone supporting us. I really want to thank those businesses and the mayor who is coming to open it.
“It’s quite a community in Milford Street. The day we opened, we had so many flowers welcoming us to the street. It was lovely.
“It’s great when businesses support each other.”
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