Solihull Council is encouraging residents to shop locally as part of the ongoing ‘Support Local’ campaign and now is asking local businesses to get involved too, to promote the services they can offer to residents.
The ‘Support Local’ campaign is a collaboration between the Council and key stakeholders such as the Solihull Chamber of Commerce, Federation of Small Businesses, Shirley Marketing Group, Solihull Bid, Visit Knowle, Touchwood, Chelmsley Wood Shopping Centre and has a focus on small and independent retail businesses on Solihull’s high streets.
Most recently Council officers have engaged with specific businesses to gather case studies, highlighting the impact of Covid-19 and what they have done to adapt during this challenging time. A great example is Yakinori, based in Touchwood, who opened their doors earlier this year and once lockdown was announced, decided to help their local community by making meals for the NHS.
Another example of business innovation includes Jac’s Cafe, based in Chelmsley Wood, that made over 200 meals for the elderly and vulnerable during lockdown, which were then delivered by volunteers from the community.
Shirley business Bei Capelli Hair Design have also been approached for a case study as a great example of a business putting in really good safety measures during lockdown ready for when they reopened.
These case studies also hope to demonstrate the range of independent retailers in the region, such as Knowle’s 1683 Chocolate Place where owner Joe Vaughan – who set up the shop five years ago when he was just 16 years old – hand makes bespoke artisan chocolates. See the case studies on Page 4 of today’s (Thursday 08 October), Solihull Observer.
If you are another small, independent business within the borough then we are encouraging you to be a part of this campaign too, you can do this in the following ways:
- Follow the Solihull Council media accounts (Instagram, Facebook and Twitter)
- Whenever you post about your business and products use #SupportLocal
- Businesses should email firstname.lastname@example.org with their business name, business information (including what you do, business website, and social media handles) to receive key updates
- Send in a picture (to the above email) which highlights the staff, the business and/or the products and services, which we can publish on the Council’s Instagram page. The most creative and funny picture will be given a free year’s membership for the Solihull Chamber of Commerce. The winner will be decided by the key stakeholders and announced on 5 December to coincide with Small Business Saturday
- Businesses are also encouraged to join their local networking hour for Solihull on Twitter #SolihullHour @solihullhour, every Tuesday from 7-8pm which is ran by the Solihull Chamber of Commerce.
Cllr Grinsell, Deputy Leader of Solihull Council, said:
“It is important we use our high streets and town centres now more than ever – without local support it may not be there in the future. We are aware that some residents may feel unsure about venturing into their local town centres that is why we are continuing to work closely with businesses to ensure they are Covid-19 secure.
“And we understand that businesses have also felt a sense of uncertainty during these last months, which is why we are encouraging them to engage with us and residents through this campaign.
“We want to know if they can offer a local speciality which an online retailer or supermarket can’t stock, we want to know about how they’re helping their local community.
“Ultimately we want to make sure that we maintain thriving high streets for residents to use in years to come, keeping Solihull a place that people want to live, work and visit.”