Monday, 2 November 2009


A scheme, giving people a real reason to shop local in Thanet, is being launched by local traders and Thanet District Council.

The Shop Local First scheme has been developed by the council, as a way of supporting local shops through the current economic problems.

The scheme brings together traders in the five pilot areas of Broadstairs, Cliftonville's Northdown Road, Margate and Ramsgate.

Local people can pick up their Shop First Local Incentive Card from Monday 2 November from all the businesses taking part, in libraries and Thanet's Gateway Plus in Margate. To mark the launch of the scheme, a special interactive shopping event is planned in the five pilot shopping areas for Saturday 14 November, where customers will be able to pick up incentive cards and enjoy food, drink, prize draw and music in the businesses taking part.

In Birchington, offers include 5-10% discounts, pensioners' specials and weekly draws, while Broadstairs traders are, between them, offering 5-10% discounts, half price offers and buy one, get one half price. In Margate, discounts range from 7.5% to 50%, with free delivery offers, while in Northdown Road, discounts range from 5-15%, with offers of free gifts with some purchases and, in Ramsgate, discounts are available of between 5-12% with offers of free gifts with some purchases. The incentives may require people to spend over a certain amount of money before the incentive is received.

The scheme will initially run for a year, but if it proves to be successful, it could be extended for longer and into other parts of Thanet.

Lucy Tuson, Communications Officer at Thanet District Council, said: "This is all about showcasing the wonderful variety of small, independent shops and businesses that we have on offer here in Thanet. It's so important to shop local and support our local businesses who create jobs in our area and offer unique services. Local shops sell a wide range of great products that are more likely to be sourced locally and, by using them, you help to keep money in Thanet's local economy and keep our shopping distinctive and individual to our area. I'm sure everyone in Thanet would agree that we all want to keep local businesses in business and local people in jobs, and by shopping local first, we can all play a part in achieving those aims."

Howard Evans from the Broadstairs and St. Peter's Chamber of Commerce said: "We'd been looking at the idea of a scheme like this for some time and were very pleased when the council put this forward. We're delighted to play our part by supporting the Shop Local First initiative. It's very important, during a recession, that small traders support their customer base by giving good service, as well as the customer supporting the trader."

Pamela Pople from the Cliftonville Partnership said: "The Shop Local First campaign will provide much needed support promoting local independent businesses Thanet-wide. We're delighted that Northdown Road is one of the five pilot areas for this scheme and we look forward to welcoming new shoppers to our area, as part of this scheme."

Businesses taking part in Shop Local First will all display a Shop Local First sticker in their window and leaflets listing the businesses and incentive cards will be available from local libraries, shops and Thanet's Gateway Plus. To find out more about the scheme, the special shopping launch event on Saturday 14 November visit or call 01843 577000.

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