At the heart of any vibrant town centre are independent traders who bring something unique to the high street.
Some would say independent businesses are key to the future in helping town centres to become the more experiential and sustainable places consumers want them to be.
From the retail sector, to hospitality and leisure, independents are vital and nowhere is that more true than Bournemouth.
Throughout July, Bournemouth Town Centre BID is running a campaign to celebrate and promote the superb independent businesses in the town centre.
‘Celebrating Independents’ is in conjunction with the Daily Echo and Hot Radio and will feature of series of promotional articles, social media posts, video and radio ads.
The theme of the campaign is be ‘Proud to be Independent, Proud to be Bournemouth.’
Chief Operating Officer of the Town Centre BID, Paul Kinvig said: “We are indeed incredibly proud of all our independent businesses in the town centre. “They really make it what it is.”
He added: “As our high streets continue to change and evolve and we see fewer big, national brands, our independent businesses are becoming more and more important and an essential part of the town centre offering.
“Each one is unique but they are all imaginative and innovative and add something extra special to the town centre. They help make it a destination and we know from our own research that many visitors come to visit their favourite independent retailer, coffee shop or restaurant where the owner knows them by name and their favourite drink.”
The Celebrating Independents initiative builds on the national Independents Day UK campaign on the weekend of July 2/3.
Independents account for around 65 per cent of the approximately 290,000 retail outlets in the UK and are at the heart of local communities throughout the country.
Shopping with a local businesses puts money directly into the local economy and by supporting a local shop, restaurant, café, leisure outlet or office-based business consumers help directly.
Independent retailers often reward regular customers and invariably provide great deals and that cannot be found in major outlets.
Local independents often stock items which are made locally and aren’t available elsewhere else, providing a great range of choice and unique products that bring much-needed originality and variety into communities – including rare finds and items that aren’t mass produced.
Local shops often source their goods locally, helping to reduce their carbon footprint.
Chairman of the Town Centre BID, Martin Davies said: “As I have said many times, Bournemouth town centre has so much going for it.
“An unrivalled location, brilliant retail and hospitality businesses, innovative independents, a rich and diverse character and of course the lovely gardens leading down to the seafront and beach.
“And right at the heart of the Bournemouth town centre experience are fantastic independents who are central to a successful future. Come and experience everything they have to offer.”
To help us celebrate the fantastic independents in Bournemouth Town Centre, why not enter our special competition and nominate your favourite business?
Simply fill in this form saying which independent retail, hospitality, leisure, or office-based business comes top of your list (and why in no more than 30 words) and you will be in with the chance of winning a £500 gift voucher.
You will be able to spend your voucher at the independent trader you have nominated.
The business must be in the Bournemouth Town Centre BID area – please see the map below.
The competition is being run in conjunction with Hot Radio.
Closing date midnight July 31.
Terms and conditions apply.