The kick-start to Independent Retailer Month takes place on 1st July 2012 at the Independent Retailer Month conference at Cranmore Park near Solihull. Up to 200 retail businesses will have the opportunity to hear from, and network with, award winning independent retailers.
Independent Retailer Month is a global "Shop Local" campaign that runs throughout July. The campaign highlights the important role smaller, local, independent retailers play in the communities they serve, the local economy they contribute to, and in the retail sector as a whole. Founded in the USA by Kerry Bannigan, CEO Nolcha Fashion Week, Independent Retailer Month UK is led by Clare Rayner, The Retail Champion.?
This coming Sunday, 1st July, marks the beginning of a month-long celebration of independent retail throughout the UK. With shopping crawls planned in Banbury to Italian themed promotions and events in Tewkesbury, Independent Retailers and local business groups are recognising the importance of re-engaging their local consumer and creating activities, promotions and events to entice them back into our towns and high streets throughout July and beyond.
Retailers are gathering at the Conference to hear some of the lessons learned and experiences of the UK's leading independent retailers. In a rare opportunity, they will also be able to quiz a panel of representatives from FSB, bira, ATCM, AMT and Skillsmart Retail about what's really being done to help save the UK high streets.
The panellists include:
- Michael Weedon, Deputy Chief Executive, British Independent Retailer Association (bira)
- Mike Cherry LIWSc FRSA, Policy Chairman, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB)
- David Morris, Town Centre Manager for Dudley MBC, Association of Town Centre Management (ATCM)
- Chris Wade, Chief Executive, Action for Market Towns (AMT)
- Jane Rexworthy, Head of the National Skills Academy for Retail The National Skills Academy, Skillsmart Retail
Throughout July retailers UK-wide are planning to display posters that encourage their customers to Celebrate Independent Retail and to 'come inside to find out more…'
Craft Focus contributor Clare Rayner, The Retail Champion and UK lead for Independent Retailer Month, explains why it's important for both retailers and shoppers to support each other if the high street is to survive and to continue to offer the local communities throughout the UK with a place to meet, shop, socialise and enjoy.
“The Independent retailers, shops, cafes, salons and boutiques, are what make each of our towns unique. Without them our towns would be clones, with all the same shop fronts – dull and bland. Independents add vibrancy, diversity and often provide a route to market for smaller brands, makers and designers who might otherwise never get their products in front of shoppers. Often leading on service, offering a more attentive, personal approach, it's no wonder smaller, independent retailers are often described fondly as "our friendly, local, independent..."
To find out more about Independent Retailer Month visit www.independentretailermonth.co.uk or follow on social media - twitter via @IndieRetailUK or www.facebook.com/IndependentRetailerMonthUK, or email email@example.com
Look through our regularly updated list of trade suppliers and wholesalers.