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Business / Living Lerwick urges shoppers to Think Local First

TOWN CENTRE management organisation Living Lerwick is this week launching a month-long campaign to highlight the benefits of using local goods and services.

Used a timely reminder in the lead up to the Christmas shopping spree research by the Centre for Local Economic Strategies has identified that for every £1 spent locally 50-70p will remain within the local economy.

In contrast, of every pound spent online just five pence will benefit the local economy.

Living Lerwick project manager Emma Miller said that this has a significant impact on local businesses and urged islanders to Think Local First.

Buying locally has a number of benefits, she said: “It saves money on delivery costs or returns; reduces the environmental impact of transport and packaging; includes a friendly and knowledgeable interaction with sales staff and keeps jobs, businesses and our community thriving.”

Shopping locally and buying services such as eating out are an essential driver of the local economy, she added.

“Most local outlets will source the bread, milk, meat or fish in your lunch from another local supplier who employs staff and purchases trade services from other local suppliers.

“This applies to locally produced goods and services too. Whatever you are looking for Think Local First.”

To get the campaign under way Living Lerwick has organised a number of events including the launch of the town centre Discover Lerwick app at the VisitScotland centre at the Market Cross on Monday 4 November between 2 and 4pm.

And during the week of 18 November Living Lerwick is running a photo competition seeking images of people’s favourite things in the town centre.

The announcement that Commercial Street has been shortlisted in the competition for Scotland’s most beautiful high street is a well timed reminder to encourage people to visit Lerwick’s own high street, according to Living Lerwick chairman Steven Mathieson.

He added: “Commercial Street and the surrounding area is home to a wealth of independent local shops, businesses, cafes, bars and amenities.

“This month, we invite everyone to think local first before they look online for goods and services.”

More info at www.livinglerwick.co.uk/events