Each week we are featuring local businesses who are doing all they can to carry on working through the pandemic. This week Elizabeth Birt speaks to some Risca companies adapting to the new climate.

POLLINATE Zero Waste Store opened on March 14, just a week before the lockdown was announced.

As a store that sells essentials – including what was, at the start of lockdown, the rare toilet roll – it was able to continue to trade, albeit with some changes – including closing the store to customers.

All orders for products are done online through the company’s online shop (https://pollinate-risca.co.uk) and then there are set times for delivery and collections.

South Wales Argus:

Claire Read who runs Pollinate Zero Waste shop in Risca. Picture: www.christinsleyphotography.co.uk

The store has been extremely popular with locals since its opening – with people wanting to become more environmentally friendly in their shopping and the handy hampers for those self-isolating, as owner Claire Read previously said: “We’ve had to make up quite a few of the hampers with essentials including toilet roll, pasta and rice for people who have been self-isolating.

“It’s nice we can provide this to help them.”


From opening, customers were encouraged to bring their own containers for their products to reduce plastic packaging, and this remains at the front of Mrs Read’s mind after moving to delivery and collection – with all orders being placed in reusable paper bags or bottles on a bottle exchange.

Orders are also able to be collected or delivered the same day if ordered before 2pm, if ordered after 2pm, they will be available the following working day. All deliveries are done after 3pm and they are open for business Monday-Friday.

Deliveries have also been expanded as on set days of the week, Pollinate are setting aside time to deliver to Newport, Cwmbran, Blackwood and Newbridge as well as the normal deliveries to the local areas of Risca, Abercarn, Rogerstone, High Cross, Bassaleg, Crosskeys and Wattsville.

Dog owners are able to have their pets groomed after Furry Godmothers re-opened on Monday, May 11.

South Wales Argus:

Sallyann Ash and Shannon Davies of Furry Godmothers in action

They re-opened after discussions with Trading Standards and following guidelines from the Canine and Feline Sector Group.

Sallyann Ash and Shannon Davies are happy to accept clients providing the guidelines are adhered to.

These include the walk to or from the grooming appointment to be as part of the daily exercise, handover of the dog to be done following social distancing, with a crate at the front of the salon that will be disinfected between each use and clients must take all collars, leads and harnesses with them.

They will also be wearing the correct PPE for the initial contact with the dogs as their coats can carry the virus, however, a bath with their shampoo will kill any virus that may be on the dog’s coat.

All appointments must be pre-booked, and they will not accept walk-ins, and they will not be doing nail trims without a bath for the dog.

Mrs Davies said: “We are very pleased that we could open safely to take care of all our furry customers’ welfare during this difficult time. They are our priority and why we got into grooming to begin with.”

Appointments will be prioritised for customers whose previous appointments were cancelled due to the initial closure of the salon and they will only allow one customer in at a time. All payments are to be either correct money in an envelope or by bank transfer before collection of the dog.

The Raven’s Nest is also adapting services to coincide with the restrictions.

South Wales Argus:

Rae at The Ravens Nest in Risca. Picture: www.christinsleyphotography.co.uk

There is a postal service for products including incense, crystals, oils, jewellery, herbal teas, loose herbs and fair-trade clothing amongst a variety of others.

Owner Rae is also continuing to do tarot readings and other services of a similar nature via phone and message and will be continuing with the monthly subscription boxes.

Those with a sweet tooth are able to continue to purchase classic sweets from Powell’s Traditional Sweet Shop. The store on Tredegar Street stocks over 1,000 different varieties of sweets including vegan, vegetarian, diabetic and sugar-free options.

They take orders for delivery through https://www.facebook.com/PowellsSweetShop/ with a quick delivery time of anywhere between half hour and just a few hours later.

South Wales Argus:

The shop is closed to the public, but deliveries are regular, and orders placed before 3pm will be delivered the same day. They deliver to Rogerstone, Risca, Crosskeys, Cwmcarn, Abercarn and Newbridge and there is a £1 delivery charge and a minimum order of £5.

Powell’s has been a popular shop for locals, with stock selling out fast. They closed on March 21 in line with government policy but began delivering orders on April 8. There have been struggles with keeping stocked up due to the ongoing situation, but they have kept their customers informed of any changes and of what stock is available at each time.