Shoppers urged to support local traders in Witney
With tomorrow night's 'switch on' of the Christmas lights, the festive season will be well under way in Witney. Traders, however, are urging shoppers to buy locally during what is expected to be a difficult time for the retail sector.
Traders, local councils and the town's Chamber of Trade, have come together to run an advertising campaign during December. There will be adverts in the Witney Gazette and Oxford Mail promoting what the town has to offer and over 5,000 more 'Stay longer in Witney' leaflets are being distributed. The campaign is being supported by the Federation of Small Business which is also holding the local launch of its ‘Keep Trade Local’ campaign in Witney tomorrow (28th November).
The adverts remind shoppers that the historic market town of Witney has over 150 shops and more than 40 places to eat and drink. Shops include well known high street names and many unique and specialist independent stores as well as busy outdoor markets on Thursdays and Saturdays. Witney can also boast of being one of the few towns of its size to provide FREE car parking.
Cllr Warwick Robinson, Cabinet Member for Economic Development at West Oxfordshire District Council said, “Free car parking in is a real bonus during these difficult economic times. We are one of the few councils in the country committed to supporting the local economy in this way.”
Lesley Semaine, Chair of Witney Chamber of Trade said, “Now is the time when local businesses need support and if people shop locally it helps to keep the town's economy buoyant and people in jobs. For the retail trade Christmas is the busiest time of the year and for some it can even be a 'make or break' time.”
Rodney Hartnell, Woolgate Centre Manager said: “Witney is a great place - it has everything you need and more and I hope local people will support the town and give traders the Christmas boost they need. At a time when fuel costs are high it really makes sense for people living nearby to shop locally and not add the extra cost of travel to their shopping trip.”
The group has been working closely with Oxfordshire County Council and Simons Construction who are removing the road closure in Welch Way today (Thursday 28th) in time for the Christmas lights being turned on and the busy shopping period.
The advertising campaign is being supported by West Oxfordshire District Council, WITAN (Witney Independent Traders Association), Woolgate Centre, Witney Chamber of Trade and the Simons Group.
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