The Chorley Guardian last week launched a campaign to support the local economy.
We are urging people to ‘Shop Local, Eat Local, Play Local’ to help ensure traders across the borough beat the recession and stave away competition from online and national brands.
The campaign is encouraging people to use local shops and discover all the benefits of shopping in the town centre.
We went out into the borough and asked independent traders what they think of our campaign, and why the people of Chorley should shop local.
MIKE REARDEN, BRAGG
After 10 years of trading, Mike Rearden, owner of bag shop Bragg on Market Street, is delighted our campaign has been launched.
Mike has benefitted from the recent re-opening to cars of Market Street and says his takings are up by 30 per cent.
He said: “It’s definitely a good thing this campaign has been set up.
“It’s getting behind independent businesses and supporting the traders.
“There is so much going for shopping locally in the town centre.
“I have been here for 10 years and I’m looking forward to seeing how things go.
“I’d encourage people to come to Bragg and sample the experience.
“I’ve heard plenty of scare stories on the internet about bags – here you can try your product and we have a minimum six-month guarentee.
“Any complaints and I am here to deal with them. The customer is the most important person and if anything goes wrong, I want to make it right.”
Brown’s Butchers on Market Place, Chorley’s oldest family butchers since 1932, are delighted with the Shop Local campaign.
Owned by John Brown, his son Chris feels it can only be a good thing that people are being encouraged to shop local.
Chris said: “This can only be a good thing.
“The town centre is the heart of a community, you get to talk to customers and you get to know them when they are in the shop.”
The award-winning butchers specialises in black pudding and haggis.
Fresh meat is made daily and Chris made a point that whatever the customer wants, they usually get.
He said: “If customers want something in particular, they can come in and give us the recipe and we will have a go with it. Just last week we made a South African-type sausage for a customer.”
Brown’s also offers a loyalty scheme and for every pound spent, points are awarded.
Monthly draws are also on offer to the more than 650 people part of the loyalty scheme.
The recession did have an impact but now business is starting to rise and Chris hopes the campaign can help.
He said: “We were hit by the recession, but now things are going well.”
Chorley Cooker Centre/
The Chorley Cooker Centre has been in Chorley since 1976 and was originally founded by Jack Hilton, and the family business is now run by Abbi and Tony Hilton.
Located on Pall Mall,
co-owner Abbi was delighted the campaign had been launched and she hopes the shop can be given a big boost.
She said: “We have always had support locally and people recognise what we offer.
“We really hope we can benefit from the campaign and we are encouraging people to give shop local a try.
“The point we want to make to people is don’t assume local retail won’t be as good as the bigger companies.”
The store specialises in cookers, washers, fridge freezers, microwaves and dishwashers.
Abbi said the shop is busier than ever and people are recovering from the recession.
Wilcock & Sons
The store has been in the town since 1878 and is now owned by Arthur Adlam.
Arthur purchased the store 15 years ago and had been an employee for 15 years before that.
He is pleased the campaign has been launched.
He said: “Chorley is good for independent traders. You come here you get personal service and sample the goods.
“We want to attract people into Chorley and I think the campaign can help do this.”
Sleepy Hollow Bed Centre
Sleepy Hollow is set for its 28th year in Chorley.
Owned an managed by Steve Godfrey and son Liam, the latterwelcomed the campaign.
He said: “It’s a great ide a and people are slowly coming round to shopping locally.
“I encourage people to give us a go rather than going to the big stores.
“Here you can sample the product and if there is a problem, you can come back and sort it out.
“We offer next day delivery and we also set the beds up for people.”