However you feel about the festive season, it is approaching again. And whilst we are all bombarded with a cacophony of corporate consumerism, we’d like to point you towards a whole world of alternatives to the high street giants.
We all know that shopping at independent outlets is crucial in sustaining the local economy, by keeping the money in the community in which it is spent. We all know that supporting independents is a great thing to do for the owners of the businesses, for whom our custom is their livelihoods. What is often overlooked is that more than a fuzzy-wuzzy, charitable act, shopping independently actually makes more sense to the discerning consumer.
Consumer? What a soulless term! I hear you cry. Here it is used in the purest sense of the word, and that is entirely the point. Rather than being corralled into the huge, identikit product farms to collect your identikit items that are sold to you by identikit advertising, going out and finding unique and interesting gems is easily worth the extra bit of consideration. Have you ever experienced what could be called the ‘personal touch’ in Argos? Do you get that sense of pride of ownership in Currys?
This is not intended to be a sermon, a rant or in any way condescending, and in many ways this article is preaching to the converted. The reason for this post is that I had to check myself recently. Having weighed up my budget for Christmas presents, I found myself looking for the cheapest ways to get the most ‘stuff’ for my two nephews. This was of course by buying online from major corporate retailers. The point is I stopped myself, and made a smaller list of better thought-out gifts that I could get locally, and have already been delighted with what I found having resolved to step away from the keyboard.
As ever, we bring you a monthly round-up of independent shops for gifts, pubs, restaurants and a host of venues for your Christmas party and other traders of all kinds, all offering something special over the course of the next few weeks.
Have a gander at our Supporters page for everything from a hamper of veg to independent, super-fast broadband. Happy shopping to one and all.