Weekly Column 19.08.20

I am very proud that we have so many fantastic small shops here in the Moorlands.  The last few months have been very difficult for so many of them and it is so pleasing to see that many have reopened and are making the best of this difficult time.

A local shop is often so much more than somewhere to buy essentials or possibly luxuries.  It might be the heart of a community, a place to see friends and neighbours and, during the Coronavirus pandemic, a lifeline delivering goods to those that cannot shop themselves.

Indie Retail estimate that for every £1 spent in an independent retailer, between 50p – 70p goes back into the local economy.  This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who has shopped in Leek and seen the Totally Locally Leek signs and posters in retailers around the town.  They estimate that if every person in the Leek area spent just £5 each week in local shops, it would see over £4 million going back into the local economy.

Given the role that our local shopkeepers play, it is great to have a chance to celebrate them and this year’s Best Small Shops Competition is just that.

The competition is free to enter and all entered shops will also be promoted to consumers through the online Indie Retail Directory.

Entries can be made on the Indie Retail website by 11 September.  A shortlist will be announced in October, with winners announced in November.

Entries can be supported with images, customer testimonials, press releases, videos or social media posts. 

We have so many great small shops here in the Moorlands. I urge all our small shopkeepers who have worked so hard over the past months to enter this competition and show everyone what makes this part of Staffordshire so very special.