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03 Dec 2020
Small Business Saturday, December 5th 2020
The aim of Small Business Saturday, now in its 8th year in the UK, is to highlight small business success and encourage consumers to shop local and support small. During this difficult year of lockdowns, people across the country have rallied to support their local independents with, according to research, “59% of Brits saying they now support local businesses more than previously”, https://smallbusinesssaturdayuk.com/
We, at the Visitor Centre, can honestly say it gives us a great sense of pride when visitors to the town say how lovely it is to see so many diverse independent shops. Sometimes, as locals, we think that the grass is greener in other localities, but if we look around Taunton we can be justly proud of the entrepreneurial spirit alive in the town and what there is on offer.
This isn’t just about shops. It also encompasses hairdressers, marketing consultants, designers, tea rooms, cottage industries – you name it, our local businesses give our town a sense of individuality. We make a connection with them, we get to know the person behind the counter and enjoy a bit of a chat when we go in. There is often a preconceived idea that merchandise or services will be more expensive, but this really isn’t the case and you have the added bonus of finding something unique.
Some of our town’s most cherished businesses have been here for decades and we mention just a few examples of this:
Hatchers is one of the country’s longest established department stores, still family run and proudly independent since 1775. www.hatchersdepartmentstore.co.uk
The Aladdin’s cave that is Watkin Toys on East Reach has been supplying quality toys since 1940. www.watkin-toys.co.uk
Nichares Hairdressers established in Taunton in 1979 and to this day continues to develop, providing a professional range of quality hairdressing services. www.nichares.co.uk
At Brendon Books, established 1989, they are not just proud independent booksellers, they have made themselves a key part of Taunton’s cultural offer by organising and presenting the Taunton Literary Festival, currently being planned for Spring 2021. www.brendonbooks.org
What do they have in common? What is the key to their longevity? Focus on customers, focus on quality, focus on values.
Let’s not forget the small businesses that come to Taunton Farmers’ Market and Taunton Independent Market which, apart from supplying a diverse range of produce, bring a distinct buzz to the town.
There can be no doubt that the effects of the pandemic have left many businesses teetering on the brink, so, when you’re shopping, whether in town or online please support local, you’ll be glad you did.
Small businesses make a BIG difference!