Family firm has new home in city
THE name may have changed on Ipswich's most recognisable furniture retail site but it remains a home for family business.
Furniture Court, run by the Holdoff family of Boonah, has set up shop in the South St store RT Edwards occupied for 32 years.
The familiar faces behind the RT Edwards chain changed three years ago, when the Edwards family sold their 18 electrical and three furniture stores, but retained ownership of the building.
RT Edwards' new owners occupied the South St shop until late September.
Following their departure, Furniture Court agreed to lease the building from Edwards Property.
Manager David Holdoff opened Furniture Court's doors on November 3, with an official opening planned for December 10.
He said the chance to expand into Ipswich was an opportunity too good to miss.
"I guess since the change three years ago when they (the Edwards family) left the furniture group, we had the opportunity to move into this area.
"(And this is) a great location. There are 60 car parks and it is the furniture destination in Ipswich. Before we have even advertised it's a big attraction," he said.
For Gary Edwards, part of the Edwards family, and born and bred in Ipswich, seeing the return of a family business was a positive.
"It's good to see a family business back in Ipswich. They'll do really well. David's a good operator, they are very similar to what we used to do," he said.
His grandfather started RT Edwards in 1931, which grew to 18 stores around coastal and regional Queensland.
RT Edwards opened their electrical store on East St in 1969, followed by the South St store 10 years later, which was originally the warehouse for the electrical store.
The store's interior underwent a complete refit for Furniture Court, including new carpet, air-conditioning and paint.
"We're still working on it. We'll have the doors open at the end of the week and throughout November," Mr Holdoff said.