New Initiative Launched to Boost Local Economy

The recent reopening of Wirral shops was highly anticipated and much needed for the local economy. It marks the start of a return to normality for residents and to business as usual for our retailers. As we have seen in other parts of the country the situation is unpredictable and our recovery could be hampered at any time so it’s important that we use this time and our joint efforts to get business moving.

If we are to make a success of bouncing back after lockdown it’s essential that we take this opportunity to get behind our local businesses and give them all the support we can. Spending with independent businesses provides huge value to Wirral with as much as 70p from every pound spent, circulating back into the local economy, helping others to prosper and grow.

With this in mind, Wirral Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce the launch of our business boosting ‘Independent Wirral’ initiative. Our aim is to unite the many small and independent businesses from our local high streets and back streets to forge mutually beneficial partnerships which can collectively attract more shoppers and generate more trade for the local economy. 

At the heart of Independent Wirral is an online directory, (www.independentwirral.co.uk) where discerning shoppers can learn about our best independent businesses, discover unique boutiques, specialist shops and local producers. As an added bonus we are launching the Independent Wirral discount card which shoppers can use to collect tempting discounts, incentives and rewards for shopping local.

The time is right for Independent Wirral and to help launch the scheme we are collaborating with Woodside Ferry Village; one of Wirral’s best loved food destinations who are unveiling a number of pop up units where Wirral’s Independents can showcase their products and reach a new audience.

We know from experience that Wirral residents want to discover the businesses that are run with passion, by owners who are knowledgeable and provide the best service. As people emerge from lockdown, they will want to buy local and support Wirral firms, their suppliers and their employees.

We would call on all independent business owners and Wirral residents to visit the website and see the huge benefits to be had by getting involved and supporting this initiative. 

Wirral Chamber CEO, Paula Basnett said of the initiative,

“We listened to businesses during lockdown and have worked hard behind the scenes to create an inclusive initiative which reaches beyond our membership. The initiative will offer assistance to all independent businesses in Wirral by creating a brand, a voice and a business toolkit, including Chamber business support. A central marketing campaign will also raise individual and collective profiles and showcase them to Wirral’s supportive shoppers who share our love of local.

Uniquely, Independent Wirral is open to all businesses, not just those with a shop front. Photographers, Travel Agents, Landscapers, Hotels and Restaurants will all play an important role in Wirral’s economic recovery and we are thrilled to be able to help. Central to the success of Independent Wirral will be Wirral residents and their eagerness to get involved by supporting local business and boosting our economy.”

Wirral Council Cabinet Member for Culture, Creative and Visitor Economy, Councillor Christine Spriggs is very enthusiastic about the launch saying,

“Here on the Wirral there is so much talent and enterprise and such a wide and diverse range of fantastic independent businesses including some wonderful socially trading and creative businesses too! As someone who has championed the importance of the independent sector for some years now it really is great to see the launch of this new Independent Wirral platform!  It means existing and new Wirral businesses have a great way to shout about what they have to offer and to spread the word far and wide! Hopefully it will encourage many more start-ups too! Independent is what Wirral has always been and now we can shop local even more and support our local Wirral independents.”

Leader of the Labour Group and Cabinet Member for Finance & Resources, Councillor Janette Williamson said of the launch,

“Independent Wirral showcases the best of our local businesses and ties into Wirral Council’s Community Wealth Building and inclusive growth strategy. Community wealth building is a people-centred approach to local economic development. It reorganises local economies to be fairer. It stops wealth flowing out of our communities, towns and cities. Instead, it places control of this wealth into the hands of local people, communities, businesses and organisations.  I am proud to support Independent Wirral and our local independent businesses. They are the lifeblood of a sustainable and vibrant local economy. I urge residents to continue to shop local, support your independent businesses and ensure that the Wirral pound will help to generate growth and prosperity across the Borough. Well done to everyone involved!”

Paul Askew, Patron Chef of The Art School Restaurant Liverpool is proud to support Independent Wirral. He said,

“The Wirral is blessed with a wealth of Independent and Artisan producers and Businesses and now like never before do they need the support and exposure to survive and grow.

Not only does Independent Wirral seek to highlight these little gems but it also will work to offer the consumer great value and opportunities.

Wirral’s identity is defined by its Independents and creativity and they will be its strength moving forward. This collaboration will accelerate and fuel that strength for the whole region and nation to see.  Let’s support and shop local through Independent Wirral!”

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