The UK’s biggest ‘geek’ store opened in Falkirk on Saturday, taking over the old Top Man unit at 47 High Street.
The new store, Geeks & Gamers, is the continuation of a local success story as it is the latest venture for a local family which is bucking the trend of High Street closures.
Geeks & Gamers has a cafe and arcade as well as a full range of products – including signed memorabilia – and regular events.
The business is owned by the Lenaghen family – mum Doris and brother and sister Leslie and Deborah – and they have invested £100,000 in the new venture.
The new store saw them move from smaller premises at 50 High Street, which closed last week.
The business began online with the family selling ‘mystery geek boxes’ as a hobby – but it soon took off and became a full-time job.
The online business is still succesful and the small store rapidly built a community of loyal customers.
Leslie said: “I believe our store is doing amazingly well because there is nothing else in Falkirk like this.
“The High Street is covered in charity shops, clothing stores and food outlets.
“What it needs is something new and fresh for the younger community, and this is what we are offering at the new store.
“We aren’t just a geek store – we have gaming tables for up to 80 people as well as an ‘old school’ arcade which includes arcade machines, a pool table, air hockey table and gaming consoles.
“It is a place where people and friends can come and meet and just enjoy themselves.”
One of the reasons for the expansion is the success of the trading card game Magic: The Gathering.
Leslie said: “We have regular events with over 30 people attending, so we now have an in-house event coordinator who will plan regular events.
To start with the new store will create five new jobs in total although Leslie hopes there will be another two or three in the near future.
The company currently employs 14 people across the Falkirk shop, the online company, GeekGear, and a salon in Stirling.
It will also be offering work experience via Falkirk Job Centre.