Council offers day of free parking as leader calls on residents to ‘shop local’ after lockdown

Mill Street in Bideford. Picture: Connor MacGillivray

Mill Street in Bideford. Picture: Connor MacGillivray - Credit: Archant

Residents in Torridge are being urged to support local businesses in the build up to Christmas as the region reemerges from the national lockdown.

Businesses including non-essential shops, restaurants and bars are able to open their doors again from today (Wednesday, December 2) following the four-week shutdown.

With three weeks until Christmas, the leader of Torridge District Council (TDC) is calling on residents to make the most of local traders in what is a vital time of the year for them.

There will be free parking in Torridge car parks on Saturday, December 5 to coincide with Small Business Saturday and encourage people to use local shops.

TDC leader, Councillor Ken James said: “I wanted to focus on what I hope should be on everybody’s shopping list this Christmas and that’s to rally round and give our support to the local high street and businesses that are so vitally important as a source of work and incomes for families in the area.

“The aim is a simple one and that is to ask each one of us individually and collectively to consider pledging as much of our spending as possible with local shops and businesses and to put ‘shop local’ at the top of all our shopping lists in the coming weeks.

“If we all spend just a small amount of money with this local focus in mind – collectively it will become a powerful economic stimulus and one, that we as Torridge residents, can be in control of. It’s worth remembering that according to economic data 63p of every £1 spent local, stays local.

Most Read

“Even if you do have to shop online for certain items, many of our independent retailers now sell online and stores such as Etsy actually allow you to locate sellers close to you.

“So, there are plenty of ways we can support our local traders and help give their businesses a boost even if you aren’t able to show your support in person.”

Cllr James said residents should keep an eye out for more days of free parking in the run up to Christmas.

He said: “I hope that as many as possible will join the shop local campaign this week and particularly on Saturday, December 5, which is designated nationally as Small Business Saturday.

“The council will be supporting this initiative by making all our car parks free to park in for the day and watch out for further free parking days in the run up to Christmas.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter