Saturday 4th July is UK Indie Day – an annual campaign to promote independent retailers in the UK. In Darwen, we are lucky to have a great variety of independent retailers, including a vibrant group of traders at Darwen Market, who help make the town a brilliant place to live and visit.
Serving the community for almost 150 years
Pledging to spend a few pounds at a local independent retailer is a simple and practical way to directly support your local economy and local community. Not only that, but shopping local often helps you out too, as in many cases you get a more personal service and quality goods. For almost 150 years, Darwen Market has been home to independent retailers, serving the local community and providing excellent service. Although much has changed over the years in terms of how we shop, the ethos of the market hasn’t changed, it’s still a wonderful community hub and there’s a fantastic variety of goods and services available there today.
The positive ripple effect of shopping small
Many of our traders support independent local businesses themselves by choosing them for their supplies and needs. Opting to shop local often has a positive ripple effect – your decision to spend a few pounds can directly support a number of local businesses. For example, several of our traders support each other by buying meat and produce from fellow Darwen Market traders to use in their menus. Laura at Sweet Vintage even uses handmade scented crystals by Darwen shop Corkee to scent the tearoom, and numerous traders go to Darwen based independent business, Indigo Eye Signs, for their signage and branding.
A huge range of local products
Customers can enjoy a huge range of delicacies from local independent businesses via our traders. On offer at the market there is fresh homegrown local produce, delicious ice cream from Lancashire businesses Holden’s and Walling’s, many local cheeses, pies and baked goods, eggs from nearby farms, bacon double smoked in a local smokehouse, Fiddler’s Lancashire crisps, cordial from Mr Fitzpatrick’s up the road in Rossendale, quality tea from Brew Tea Company in Manchester, Williams Handbaked cakes from Preston and much more. Turner’s Butchers even have their own family farm in Tockholes – you couldn’t really get more local if you tried!
Shopping local is more “green”
With many of us becoming more environmentally aware (and for good reason), it’s important to note that shopping local and shopping small is better for the environment, too. Goods don’t have far to travel, meaning their carbon footprint is smaller. So if you choose to shop with your local independent retailers, you’ll be reducing your own carbon footprint in the process.
Skilled independent traders
Extending the life of your items is another way to be kinder to the environment, and we are very lucky at Darwen Market to have many skilful traders who are masters of their craft, including Jackie at Stitch, Darrell at Percival Pictures, Jonathan at Gold & Times and Tony at The Cobblers. It’s convenient and easy to get your shoes and jewellery repaired, clothes altered and artwork framed at the market, and you’ll be supporting independent businesses along the way. Shopping small for these jobs often means you receive more thorough service, and you are welcome to ask for the expert advice or opinion of the stall/shop holder.
Passionate traders, quality service
Indie Retail sum it up well themselves: “Independent retailers offer choice, diversity of product and service, tradition as well as innovation, and a more personal service to customers. They are also job creators and contributors to local and national economies.” Your local independent shops need your support, and in return you will receive top quality service and often items that you can’t get elsewhere. You’ll also help to keep your local market and high streets thriving – several Darwen Market Traders, such as Leemings Butcher’s, Petals and Rushton’s, have been trading for decades, and you’ll be helping them to keep prospering.
Behind all of Darwen Market’s stalls – from food and produce, cafes and gifts, to hair and beauty and service-based stalls – our passionate business owners and employees who put great time and effort into serving the local community and beyond. Pledge a few pounds to support your local economy this week, you won’t be disappointed!