District Dispatch - 27 October 2022
This week I wanted to let you know about a fantastic scheme that we are investing in to help support businesses across the district.
This month the online platform ShopAppy launched in Selsey. The site enables residents and visitors to browse, book and buy products online from local businesses and shops. I know that more than 45 of the town's businesses have signed up to the service already and we are expecting many more to get on board over the next few months.
The platform launched in Chichester and East Wittering earlier this year, with a wide range of businesses joining from gift shops to jewellers, to local food producers and beauty parlours.
The ShopAppy platform is a social enterprise which gives local shops and businesses the chance to be part of a local business community, establish an online presence if they don't already have one and offer a range of services including 'click and collect' and home deliveries. The platform was created to help British high streets by providing an alternative way for small businesses to compete with the big retail names.
As a council, we are keen to do what we can in order to support local businesses. Using some Government funding that we applied for, we are currently paying for businesses in our street areas to join ShopAppy until March 2023 so I would urge any business in our designated high street areas to find out more
You may not be aware, but for every pound you spend in a small or medium-sized business, roughly 63 pence will stay in the local economy, so by using ShopAppy you really are helping your local businesses and supporting local livelihoods and local families.
The scheme will also be launching in Midhurst and Petworth over the coming months, enabling even more businesses to have an online presence.
As a council, we support local businesses in a variety of ways, and this is just one example of the many schemes, grants and projects that we have set up. We offer a business contact scheme; an enabling grants scheme and a retail mentoring scheme which are all overseen by our dedicated Economic Development team. We have also set up a pop-up shop scheme, developed an events strategy; made improvements to our parks and gardens and city centre public toilets and we also offer a range of flexible parking options to encourage people to visit the city and stay longer.
I would also like to take the opportunity to point businesses in the district to our business support pages that we have created as part of our recently launched Supporting You campaign.
While we are on the subject of supporting businesses, I would like to say how fantastic it was to see The Cross Market and More event return to Chichester this month. The event was received really well, with many people flocking to the city centre, and I know that many of the stallholders did good trade which is very encouraging. We are planning to hold more Cross Market and More events next year, so keep a look out for dates.
Sticking to the theme of markets, don't forget that the regular Chichester Farmers' Market will take place on Friday 4 and Friday 18 November from 9am to 2pm, on East Street, with a variety of locally grown, produced and sourced products.
Finally, as we are in the school holiday, do make sure you check to see what's on at The Novium Museum - they have lots of fun activities and exhibitions on including The Art of Chichester and the Young Artists exhibitions.
Cllr Eileen Lintill
Leader of Chichester District Council