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Business rate reform called for as industry reacts to landslide Labour election win

9 Jul 2024

Following Labour’s general election win, the retail industry has stressed the need for a business rates overhaul to protect high streets across the country.
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Bira calls on new Labour government to prioritise independent retail sector

9 Jul 2024

Following Labour’s landslide Election victory, Bira, the British Independent Retailers Association, has urged the new government to make good on its promise of change by prioritising the... Read more…

Much loved toyshop saved by owner's daughter

9 Jul 2024

A much-loved toy shop in Aberystwyth that was facing closure has been saved after the former shopkeeper's daughter decided to take over the reins.
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Inverness-based retailer wins coveted Drapers Award for Best Independent Footwear Retailer

9 Jul 2024

A family-owner retailer in Inverness, Begg Shoes, has been named Best Independent Footwear Retailer at the 2024 Drapers Footwear Awards, held annually to celebrate the outstanding achievements... Read more…

'Pay-as-you-feel' barber wins hairdressing award

9 Jul 2024

A man who offers "pay-as-you-feel" haircuts has been named the UK's best barber.
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The Times publishes its list of the seven best shopping streets in the UK

24 Jun 2024

The Times has just published its list of the seven best shopping streets in the UK.
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Indie retail village wins Hospitality Hero Velvet Award for 2024

24 Jun 2024

An independent retail village in Ely that celebrates its one-year anniversary this month has won the Hospitality Hero Velvet Award for 2024.
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Bike shop owner slams police’s “abject apathy” after three shops broken into in one night

24 Jun 2024

A cycle shop owner has criticised the police’s “abject apathy” towards bike theft after thieves attempted to break into his store for the second time in a year, on the same... Read more…

A simple comparison of the General Election manifestos

24 Jun 2024

With less than three weeks to go until the General Election, Bira has produced a simple table comparing manifestos for Labour, Conservatives, Liberal Democrats, Green Party and Reform UK, and... Read more…

Independents Day message - supporting independent shops boosts local jobs and economies.

24 Jun 2024

With the annual Independents’ Day weekend coming up on July 6th and 7th, independent retailers have been reinforcing the message that supporting independent shops boosts... Read more…

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Independents Day message - supporting independent shops boosts local jobs and economies.

Posted on in Business News

With the annual Independents’ Day weekend coming up on July 6th and 7th, independent retailers have been reinforcing the message that supporting independent shops boosts local economies.

Independants day

Around the country shops are planning special events and promotions for Independents’ Day, making use of this year’s special campaign poster, which can be downloaded here.

For Wild Oats, Bristol's oldest independent health and wellbeing store, local reputation and being part of the community is important.

“We're well known for our customer service. That’s what really sets us apart from some of the big chains out there so, over the last 40 years, we have developed a very loyal customer base,” says Jordan Clements, Wild Oats’ Marketing Manager

But for Wild Oats, supporting local is equally important.

“We try and keep the miles that we get the products in from quite low,” continues Jordan, “so that in turn supports other local Bristol brands. It’s important for us to be at the heart of supporting local and ethical products.”

Wild Oaks are also committed members of Bira, which is supporting this year’s Independents’ Day campaign.

“Being a Bira member has been important for the business. We've leaned on Bira for a few things, from legal advice to policies relevant to the store, it's a comfort to know that we've got someone to call for extra advice or to talk things through.”

And when it comes to supporting local indie shops this Independents’ Day weekend, Jordan has a clear message for Bristol shoppers:

“Independent shops care about you. They care about the whole chain, really. They care about the suppliers, what they're getting in the shop, who they're sending it to, and making sure that you've got exactly what you need. So, we need that support. That’s why we’re getting our heads together to see how we can help make the most of Independents’ Day this year in Bristol.”

That’s a message echoed by Andy Massey, family member of a 77-year-old DIY business in Swadlincote, Derbyshire, who emphasises the critical role that supporting independent shops plays in protecting local jobs and bolstering the local economy. His great-grandfather, Reg Massey, founded the business by dispensing paint into treacle tins retrieved from the dustbin men, and it has since grown into Masseys DIY, a large 30,000 sq/ft community cornerstone.

"We are part of this community; we live and work here,” says Andy. “Our 35 staff members are local residents, so when you support us, you're supporting local families and our local economy. We pay our share of UK taxes and business rates, unlike some multinationals that benefit from unfair tax advantages and government grants. Supporting independent shops like ours ensures that local jobs stay local, and our community thrives."

Andy also highlights the value of the company’s long history:

“Having a long history as a business is wonderful. Being well-established has made us a recognised brand locally. While the older generation is familiar with our store, it’s exciting to share our rich history with newer residents in the area. It helps connect them to the community and to us.”

Masseys DIY is also a proud, long-time member of the British Independent Retailers Association (Bira). Andy Massey values this affiliation:

"We are proud to be long-standing members of the British Independent Retailers Association (BIRA). Being part of BIRA gives us a collective voice and representation alongside many other independent retailers. It provides us with valuable resources, support, and a sense of community. BIRA helps us stay informed about industry trends and changes, and it advocates on our behalf to ensure fair treatment in the marketplace. This support is crucial in helping us navigate challenges and continue to thrive as a local business. We're grateful for the solidarity and the strength that comes from being part of such a dedicated organisation."

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