TOWN traders are coming together to launch a new initiative aimed at encouraging people to shop locally.
They calculate that, if every adult in Hungerford spent just £5 per week in local shops and businesses instead of online or at the big chains, it would generate an extra £1.5m per year for the local economy.
The project could even create more jobs.
Under the auspices of the chamber of commerce, local businesses are launching the Totally Locally Hungerford project next month.
Similar initiatives are already up and running in 20 market towns throughout Britain, featuring a series of programmes and promotions that encourage residents to support the independent businesses that are a part of what makes living in a market town great.
Totally Locally Hungerford will initially focus on the High Street retailers, but a second phase will concentrate on raising the profile of some of the town’s other independent businesses.
While the idea came from the chamber of commerce, and seed-funding will be from the chamber, a group of retailers and businesses will be running the programme.
Chairwoman of Hungerford Chamber of Commerce, Christina Finlay (pictured), said in a statement: “Totally Locally creates strong, vibrant towns and sustainable local economies.
“Independent businesses and shops are the bedrock of our communities, and when they thrive they create real jobs, cohesive towns and strong economies.”
She added: “Totally Locally helps people to rediscover and fall in love with their high streets.
“Many of their projects are award- winning, and the Town Kit is used by groups all over the world, making their towns better places to live and work.”
More than 20 UK market towns have been running the scheme and the town that it started in, Leek in Staffordshire, is now on the top market towns list – something its retailers credit to Totally Locally.
Anyone interested in learning more is invited to attend a meeting of the chamber in the Magistrates’ Room at the Town Hall on Thursday, September 7, or to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The project will be officially launched by the Hungerford town crier on the steps of the Town Hall on September 23 and will begin with ‘Fiver Fest’ which will continue to run into October.
Each participating shop on the high street (from the chip shop down to Charnam Road) will highlight their £5 offer to encourage residents to buy locally instead of online or with national chains.
The £5 offers will be shown both in the shop and online at Totally Locally Hungerford on Facebook and @totallocalhf on Twitter.