I had no idea what Independent Liverpool actually did, even thought I heard of the name. That all changed when I attended last month’s Weightmans Wednesday networking event, where I listened to an excellent talk given by the organisation’s co-founders Oliver Press and David Williams. At the event, I learnt not only about what they did, but even more impressively, the excellent work that Independent Liverpool has done for the city.
From start to finish I was impressed with David and Oliver’s story. Their passion and belief in supporting and celebrating Liverpool’s local businesses, struck a chord with everyone in the room, including myself. In this day of multi-national chains dominating the high street, we forget about the individually unique places that lie underneath the retail radar. This is why the work of David and Oliver in encouraging people to shop locally and discover the hidden gems of Liverpool’s independent businesses, is refreshing and wonderful to see.
David and Oliver talked about how Independent Liverpool has grown since its blogging beginnings in 2013. Through harnessing the Internet and social media, the organisation has a membership card scheme with over 11,000 people, a stylish website and a mobile application, which supports over 100 local businesses. Independent Liverpool also recently hosted its first Food & Drink Festival in the Baltic Quarter, and it has been the catalyst for similar schemes in Birmingham and Sheffield.
Independent Liverpool supports local businesses by engendering a sense of community, adventure and discovery. This is achieved by promoting and recommending businesses including cafes, bars, shops, restaurants and hairdressers to shoppers, visitors, students and professionals. These make them visible to a wider audience, which has breathed life into Liverpool, by increasing the visibility, footfall and turnover of local businesses, which ensures money spent, stays in Liverpool. This helps them to survive and prosper together as a close-knit, supportive and vibrant community.
To conclude, I would like to thank David and Oliver for an excellent talk, and for their incredible work. Having purchased a membership card myself, I shall be playing my part in supporting local businesses, as they are so important to the local and national economy.
Independent Liverpool is a great success story, and I am sure you agree!
You can find more about Independent Liverpool below.