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Council pledges backing for Independents Day initiative with ‘shop local’ message

Independent retailers are again to be promoted to the full as part of a special national initiative to encourage people to support their local traders.

But DUP Councillor Phil Moutray believes that the scheme – known as Independents Day – should be promoted to customers all year round.

Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council has again agreed to take part in Independents Day.

And they have allocated £20,000 to this year’s event, which takes place on Saturday, July 2.

It will support and promote our local independent traders on the day, not just in the city and main ‘hubs’ but across the borough.

It follows approval of a proposal brought by Councillor Moutray to the council’s economic development and regeneration committee.

The DUP representative said he was pleased to be able to make the case for the council to once again back the initiative.

Said Councillor Moutray: “The objective of Independents’ Day is to encourage more people to shop in local independent retailers around our city, towns and villages.

“My own main employment is within the grocery retail sector and I understand the difficulties independent shops can face against large corporate competition.

“The initiative, led by the Northern Ireland Retail Trade Association, will promote a need to ‘shop local’, and Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council will be contributing £20,000 to this campaign.

“I believe that, in order for this to be a success, the legacy must extend much further than the 2nd July, Independents’ Day date.

“We must encourage consumers to shop in independent retailers all year round.

“The role of independents in our local economy is of utmost importance. As a community, and as a council, we must be seen to support them.”

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