PRESS RELEASE from Lincoln Central Market Retailers at Sylvia's Shoes, 2 by 2 Pet Supplies & Unicorn Tree Books.
Independents’ Day 2011 - your high street & Market needs you!
Today is the 4th July 2011 and here in Lincoln as well as across the country, the public have been encouraged to buy at least one item from their local, independent shop to keep the high street alive.
Skillsmart Retail and the National Skills Academy for Retail have teamed up with independent retailers and trade associations around the country to encourage the public to celebrate diversity on the high street & in the Markets and support their local, independent retailers on 4th July. Retailers downloaded the ‘Your high street needs you!’ poster online, ‘like’ the campaign on Facebook and following it on twitter.
We here in the Markets are all independent businesses and a number of us have been actively promoting today with posters on our stalls, with twitter and facebook posts and in person.
As the Lincoln Echo article on page 2 pointed out times are hard and closures are a reality, Fresh data from Local Data Company’s surveys of 2,700 UK retail destinations (out of a potential 4,400 total UK destinations), highlights that high street vacancy rates have started to rise again. The Local Data Company states that 14.6% of outlets are now vacant. This indicates that approximately 50,000 units are now not currently open to business on the UK high streets, showing just how challenging the situation is on the ground.
'In Lincoln Central Market a number of us are working to promote the fact that the high street and markets are still places of great value despite the percieved thoughts that supermarkets, national chains and of course the internet are where the best bargains are to be had - this isn't always true and independent retailers often sell things at the same or cheaper prices than the large retailers and yet give often more back to the community and local economies, Local independent retailers such as those in the market also supply items often not found elsewhere - our market in Lincoln is such a place with the only independent bookshop in Lincoln that also is now the only Christian Bookshop after two previous such shops closed down, 2 by 2 Pets also is the only city centre pet shop selling things not always found elsewhere, though Raw has closed down Sylvia's Shoes is still here in the market providing shoes as an independent, The Lincoln Stamp Centre is one of only a very few independent stamp collectors businesses still in lincolnshire - so though it may to some seem a 'drab' market hall it is certainly vibrant with unique independent businesses and somewhere perhaps worth checking out and promoting we hope.'
Anne Seaman, Chief Executive of Skillsmart Retail said: “We are delighted to lead this campaign and support small retailers. Raising awareness amongst the public is one of the biggest challenges smaller retailers face and our message is about encouraging the public to use their local high street & Markets and understand how important a diverse retail sector is.
It’s also essential that local retailers understand that to compete today they need to be top of their game. The time for sitting back has passed and action is required: Your high street needs you!”
For more local information contact Melanie Carroll - owner of Unicorn Tree Books, Lincoln Central Market on 07789 249228
For more Independents day information: ( http://skillsmartretail.ctml2.com/skillsmartretaillz/WebCapture.aspx?pID=141&t=0 )