Shoppers are being urged to support Wellingborough’s “vibrant” independent businesses as part of a campaign to ‘shop local’ and boost the town’s economy.
The calls come as part of Independent Retailer Month, which runs nationally throughout July, and just before the launch of the £50m Rushden Lakes development, featuring national chains including Marks & Spencer and Joules.
New figures have revealed that for every £1 spent with independent retailers, around 70p recirculates back into the local economy. For the same £1 spent out of town or online just 5p trickles back to the local community.
The Wellingborough Business Improvement District (BID) – an organisation paid for by town centre businesses to encourage people into the town through its Discover Wellingborough campaign – has championed the role independent businesses play in a thriving economy.
John Cable, Executive Director of the Wellingborough BID, said: “While we are excited about the opening of a major shopping complex in the county we also want to encourage people to support their local community and all it has to offer.
“There’s more to Wellingborough than meets the eye. There are some fabulous, quirky shops and tasty places to eat and drink and Independent Retailer Month gives us the perfect opportunity to celebrate this.”
The BID has launched a poster campaign reminding customers how important smaller, local, independent retailers are to the communities they serve, the local economy they contribute to, and to the retail sector as a whole.
The poster promotes the Pride of Wellingborough Awards which celebrates the town’s niche traders, encouraging people to keep shopping locally and support retailers selling niche goods customers will not find at larger scale shopping centres.
Mr Cable added: “This is about showcasing the best of our great town centre and that’s what the Pride of Wellingborough does. We want to remind people about all the vibrant independent businesses we have right here on our doorstep. We send out a fortnightly review of a shop, pub and restaurant, health and beauty salon or professional service business, which is published on the Discover Wellingborough website and emailed out to everyone on our newsletter database. People are then urged to vote for their favourite.
“Not only is this promoting everything we have to offer in our town centre, but it’s encouraging customers to engage with us. Supporting independent retailers helps our community and ensures our high streets are very much ‘open for business’.”