Our independent shops were buzzing on Saturday when the town and many visitors form outside the area visited to support.
Over 60 Independent retailers, cafés, restaurants and other businesses across Devizes took part and helped boost spirits in Devizes post-COVID. More than £200 worth of prizes and vouchers, kindly donated by participating retailers and eateries, will be picked up in the next few days, sincluding cream teas, free hair and beauty treatments, flower seeds, gifts and craft items, £25 book voucher, trial gym membership wroth £60 and more.
The ‘indieDAY’ celebrated the large and diverse independent selection available to Devizes residents, locals and visitors, with social distancing at the core of the organisation of the day. We asked for help from Devizes Town Council and they kindly helped fund printing for our boards and posters as well as providing facilities such as the outdoor seating in the Market Place and access for six youth traders inside The Shambles Market Hall.
Our event has been hugely supported by Devizes Town Council, which has installed a new seating area in the Market Place for use by local café-users and visitors. A cross-party group of local politicians came together to support @indiedevizes, along with a many local businesses. teh Mayor, Chris Gay, gave a very interesting insight into the history of the town, with Danny Kruger, MP for Devizes, extolling the virtues of the town and the many independent businesses.
Launched at 10am in the Shambles by the Mayor, Chris Gay, and Danny Kruger MP, here are some of the things that went on during the day…
- indieTRAIL– visit seven independent retailers with the indieDAY map for a chance to win one o three hampers packed with indie goodies or an individual prize for the most interesting comment on the day. Entries will be entered in a prize draw and there will be several prizes for the most interesting comments
- Musicians in the Brogans garden (socially distanced) entertained visitors enjoying refreshments from local cafes and restaurants – ably organised by Darren from Devizine who coped with last minute artist cancellations admirably – THANKS DARREN
- U25s pop-up craft stalls in the Shambles, along with the regular Saturday traders were a bit hit! – see www.devizesmarkets.org.uk
- Devizes Donkeys delighted families in the Market Place
- The Wild Man with the wild flowers will be walking the street offering advice and seeds to those wishing to start an eco-friendly garden
- Farmers’ Market – held regularly every first Saturday off the month (from 9am)
‘Whilst some businesses including mine continued to operate during lock-down, the majority had to close. Devizes has such a rich mixture of independent businesses that I felt, with the end of lockdown approaching, we needed to boost visitors to the town, old and new. The support we’ve received from all quarters has been amazing and the indieDay will, I hope, be the first of many.’ Justina Pettifer, of Healthy Life in the Little Brittox.
‘Anyone who knows Devizes will say what a great selection of shops, cafes/restaurants and businesses there are, and we all need to continue supporting them. The Town Council is delighted to be supporting this campaign, not least as many of our Councillors either have or have had their own businesses in the town and both recognise and appreciate the importance of such efforts. I love Devizes and want to do everything I can to help it be as vibrant as possible’Mayor of Devizes, Chris Gay.
‘I’m a great believer in small businesses and the part they play in the local and UK economy. Having visited Devizes two weeks ago and me with many local business owners, I applaud the work being done by Devizes Retailers and Independents, along with the Town Council, to help re-generate the town’s economy following. Small businesses, particularly those run by those under 30, are key to the future success of any town and I much look forward to attending IndieDAY and being a part of it.’ Danny Kruger, MP for Devizes.
‘This is going to be such a huge boost for our independent retailers and it will be a fantastic road map for other towns to use. Devizes offers a diverse and exciting array of independent retailers – the 5th September is a great opportunity to show that off’ Simon Fisher, Town Clerk.