Durham Independents: supporting local businesses this winter


This winter, Durham shoppers can participate in a prize draw for a share of £2,500 worth of vouchers to spend in Durham’s independent businesses.

Durham Independents, an event held by Durham Business Improvement District (BID), is a campaign to encourage people to shop in local businesses, especially during the run-up to the festive season.

From 17th November to 22nd December, shoppers can pick up loyalty cards from over 40 independent and small businesses in Durham, collecting a stamp each time they purchase an item from one of the stores. If they collect three stamps, the loyalty card can be submitted to enter the prize draw.

Five winners will be chosen each week, each receiving £100 worth of vouchers.

Businesses taking part range from cafés and bookshops to art galleries and watchmakers, including Bean Social, Circle Vintage, The Record Shed, The Plant Man, and Zapatista amongst many others.

Businesses taking part range from cafés and bookshops to art galleries and watchmakers

A full list of the businesses involved in Durham Independents can be found here.

Maple Patisserie. Image courtesy of Durham BID

Paul Howard, manager for Durham BID, announced that “Durham City has a thriving independent shopping scene with everything from vintage and clothing stores to shops that offer handmade arts and crafts, and specialty food and drink products.

“We launched Durham Independents to not only shine a spotlight on these fantastic businesses but to put money in their tills and boost the local economy.

“If people are out shopping in the city, whether it’s to pick up fruit and veg from Robinson’s Greengrocers or buy Christmas gifts from places such as Elvet and Bailey, we’re encouraging them to pick up a loyalty card and get it stamped.”

Durham BID works with local businesses to increase activity in the City Centre – they run events across the year, encouraging both local shoppers and tourists to choose to shop locally. Recent events have included Fire & Ice in Durham, Christmas in Durham, and Durham Restaurant Week.

On their website, they say that one of their goals is to “ensure that our visitors have a safe and enjoyable time here to ensure that they come back again and again.”

Durham Ginstitute. Image courtesy of Durham BID

Matty Booth, co-founder of Northern Stores and Deli, a shop participating in the campaign, said: “Durham Independents is a brilliant campaign that drives footfall in the city centre.

“Plus, it’s a great way to incentivise people to shop locally – with the chance of winning vouchers. We’ve had winners in the past who’ve used their vouchers to buy Christmas presents for family and friends, or treat themselves.”

Northern Stores and Deli started as a food, drinks, and crafts shop for northern producers, and has recently expanded to open a deli in the coming weeks.

Shoppers can hand in their completed loyalty cards at: Moon, Silver Street; Northern Stores and Deli, Unit 14, Highstreet; Upcycle Me, Durham Indoor Market; or the Durham BID Post Box, 27 High Street.

Image courtesy of Durham BID

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