Moret than 2000 fishkeepers and hobbyist, many who queued from 8am, attended the launch of Fishkeeper Scotland’s second store in the Lothians at Dobbies Garden Centre.
In addition, funds were raised for two charities close to the hearts of staff – the Sick Kids Hospital and the SSPCA.
The new flagship store, which is the award-winning company’s ninth store in Scotland, celebrated the launch with an official ribbon cutting ceremony, goody bags for the first 70 customers, children’s face painting, a celebratory 2ft ‘Golden Nugget’ fish cake, a Forth 1 radio roadshow with DJ Mark Martin and various competitions, discounts and offers.
The new store has been given a complete revamp since taking over the Dobbies’ aquatic concession and now stocks more than 5,000 exotic invertebrates and tropical freshwater, marine, coldwater and pond fish from around the world, including Clownfish and Tangs as well as Discus and Cichlids. The store also features the company’s first 6,500 litre koi pond, where visitors can feed the fish.
Colin Christian, Fishkeeper Scotland regional director, said: “We are delighted that visitors turned up in record numbers to help us celebrate the official launch of our new Fishkeeper Scotland store at Dobbies.
“It was great to welcome not only avid fishkeepers and hobbyist but also families who came from as far afield as the Borders, to enjoy a great day out and check out our new flagship store which we are very proud of.
“The feedback already received has been hugely positive not only on the layout and increased stock but also on the unusual and rare species that are now available, many of which have never been seen in Scotland.
“I’m confident the new store, which is our ninth store in Scotland, will continue to be a huge hit with customers who are in great hands with the fantastic team we have on board who are all fishkeepers with incredible knowledge and experience in everything aquatic and who have done a great job getting the store ready in time for our big weekend.”
The new store also stocks more than 200 aquariums, including the company’s own AquaOak range and freshwater plants, saltwater corals, ponds and accessories and is part of an ongoing expansion programme, which will see the total number of Fishkeeper Scotland stores increase to 14 by the end of 2017.