Independents join to woo shoppers
EXETER'S independent retailers are determined to put themselves on the shopping map this Christmas. Around 30 have banded together to promote the Christmas Shopping Crawl which is being launched on November 16.
A map of where the businesses are has been produced and shoppers collects stamps on the map as they shop.
This allows them entry into a draw to win one of three bundles of prizes which have been donated by the retailers taking part. One lucky winner will get a full body massage from Eden Day Spa, a pair of earrings from Erin Cox Jewellery and a cocktail masterclass for 10 at Oddfellows.
Shoppers will have until the end of December to collect stamps.
One of those leading the initiative in Exeter is Sue Taylor who, with her husband John, owns Cafe at 36 in Cowick Street, St Thomas.
Mrs Taylor said: "I think the independents are getting a bit forgotten and yet there are a lot of vibrant independents in Exeter but they are not on the High Street.
"We felt that we needed to raise our profile, and also it is a bit of a reaction to John Lewis.
"There is a whole range of independents which can give you a unique service."
The map gives details of shops, cafes and salons in St Thomas as well as those dotted around the city centre but not actually in High Street.
Also taking the lead with Mrs Taylor are Penny Nicholson who runs an online fruit and vegetables delivery to work places, Amanda Leach of Insideout and Kirsty Burch who runs the franchise Snappy Snaps. Exeter City Council has provided funding for the first print run of 6,000 maps and Nia Gould, graphic artist at the Phoenix, has donated her time to design the map. Rosie Denham, Exeter's portfolio holder for economy and tourism, said: "The Exeter Indie Christmas Shopping Crawl is a great way to encourage shoppers to explore the wealth of independent retailers in the city."
Businesses taking part include Bunyip Beads, Cafe at 36, Devon Coffee, Eden Day Spa, Erin Cox Jewellery, Fizzy Wizzy Woo, Insideout, Inspirations, Inspirations hair/wigs, Isca Models, Meme, Moko, Pennys Recipes, Shaker Maker,Sweet Cheeks, The Cove, Devon Weigh, Cookware and Homebrew, Tadsurf, Luxtons Pharmacy, Snappy Snaps, Off the hook, No Guts No Glory, Iris Boutique, Nutters, Violette, Crede Boutique, Kintamani and The Oddfellows.