*Please note, this is a paid collaboration with the Gallagher Retail Park When it comes to going shopping, especially when we are shopping with Biggest, town centres are often not the best place for us. The Gallagher Retail Park is only ten minutes or so from our house, just down the motorway towards Cheltenham, and it has a great range of shops and amenities. Therefore, when they asked us to come and spend the day shopping for our back to school essentials, we were very happy to take part. This is definitely something that we would have been doing around this time anyway. The Gallagher Retail Park is always our main stop when we have a big event to shop for, like holidays or back to school.
The Gallagher Retail Park offers a great range of cafés and stores, including two of my favourites, Boots and Next. Whether you’re looking to kit out your summer wardrobe or buy some new furnishings, you’ll find everything you need at the retail park on the A4019 Tewkesbury Road.
Energy Boost at Costa Coffee
We started off our trip with a stop at Costa before getting stuck into our shopping. Biggest’s favourite part of any trip is usually stopping for food and drink and he is extremely fond of their Lemon Drizzle Cake!
Our Morning Shopping at Gallagher Retail Park
For our first stint at shopping, we headed to Hobbycraft and Next, both places I could spend a fortune in! We love crafting and so I am usually buying lots of supplies for our current project. However, on this trip we had more practical concerns. We picked up some Sharpies (perfect for naming those tricky items that cannot be labelled) and some reward stickers. The stickers were not strictly needed but Biggest fell in love with them.
Next for Uniforms
I love Next clothes and particularly the children’s range. Most of Biggest and Littlest’s clothes come from there. They are always such lovely designs and high quality. I did not realise that Next did much School uniform until recently, but they actually have quite a large range. We stopped off there to pick up the bulk of our shop. We purchased polo shirts, socks, underwear and a few non-school items (just because I could not resist!)
Unfortunately, Next did not have the kind of school trousers we need for Biggest. As he is autistic, he struggles with motor skills and so cannot manage a clasp or zips yet. We headed off to Sainsbury’s next, for a spot of lunch before going in search of the final items on our list.
Sainsbury’s and Sports Direct
One of the great things about the Gallagher Retail Park is, just like a town centre, there are plenty of places to stop for lunch. Not only this, but because the car park is central, it is really easy to put the bags back in the car before lunch, or at any time when your arms are getting tired! Having everything so central is also perfect for shopping with small children. Nothing is too far to walk for little legs and there is lots of opportunity for refreshment. I also managed to keep Biggest going with the promise of popping in to look at the animals in Pets At Home too! I picked up a dog toothbrush for our Springer Spaniel, Willow, while he admired the bunny rabbits.
Once we had finished our lunch in the Sainsbury’s cafe, we headed to their uniform section. They also had a huge range of colours and styles of uniform, for big kids and little kids. Luckily, we found the kind of school trousers we needed for Biggest.
We did also pop into Sports Direct as they had some great deals on PE kit and bags.
Our Back to School Haul
By now it was the afternoon and Biggest was starting to get a little overwhelmed and tired. Luckily, we had almost everything we needed and the car was just a few hundred yards away. Shopping can be a really stressful experience for Biggest. Having somewhere with a huge range of products, but all quite central, makes a huge difference to us. If I had been searching out different shops along a high street, I have no doubt that Biggest would not have lasted as long. As it happens, we had a lovely mother and son bonding day AND we managed to get almost everything we needed. Win win.
If you live in the Cheltenham area and need back to school supplies, I recommend the Gallagher Retail Park highly.
Please note, this is a paid collaboration with the Gallagher Retail Park. However, all opinions and images are my own. Gallagher is genuinely ten minutes from us and is always our shopping destination of choice. For more information, please see our Disclosure Policy.