More than 40 businesses back 'Totally Locally Axminster' drive to support independent traders

PUBLISHED: 07:51 12 September 2019 | UPDATED: 07:51 12 September 2019

Axminster town centre. Picture: Google Maps

Axminster town centre. Picture: Google Maps

Picture: Google Maps

More than 40 businesses have thrown their support behind an initiative to put the spotlight on impendent traders amid a national high street crisis.

Traders such as Axminster Tools and Axminster Carpets have signed up to the 'Totally Locally Axminster' drive to get the community to support the independent businesses dotted around the town.

The initiative is launching with a week-long 'Fiver Fest' from Saturday, October 5 to Saturday, October 12, which will see individual independent businesses offering good value deals for £5.

A spokesman for Totally Locally Axminster said: "The aim is to promote one pivotal message.

"If every adult in Axminster and the surrounding area spent just £5 per week in their local independent shops that they would otherwise have spent online, in supermarkets or with the huge multi-nationals, it would put around £1.8 million a year back into our local economy."

The new impetus to push Axminster's positives comes at a time as the landmark Trinity House department store is due to close its doors in a few weeks' time. The town also lost out in a recent bid for Government high street funding.

Jane Rockett, of Axminster Printing, which is currently celebrating 50 years in the town, said: "No-one is going to do it for us so it's up to the independent traders who make this town tick to get the community behind us.

"The independents have always been here and we are its future — but we will only survive if people who live locally are prepared to back us.

"The key point we are making is that it requires only a small change in habits to turn the tide. The £5 you spend with a local shop or business will usually stay in Axminster because it will be used to pay wages and to buy services from other local traders."

Organisers of Totally Locally Axminster say they are 'delighted' with the response from Axminster businesses. Barrie Hedges, of Archway Bookshop, said: "Our aim was to attract maybe 20 traders for the Fiver Fest. The sheer enthusiasm has taken us by surprise — if we can match that in terms of the public response, we will be delighted.

Traders wishing to join the Totally Local Axminster initiative can contact Mr Hedges via barrie@archwaybookshop.co.uk or Mrs Rockett via jane@axminsterprinting.co.uk

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