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Help your city by keeping spend local

Sponsored feature | By Ian Sandison, CEO of Cambridge BID

Cambridge BID hosted our Mystery Shop Awards last Thursday and our first Job Fair on Tuesday (October 4) and as I spoke to the 100 or so businesses who attended these events there was quite a common theme - local customers are key to their success.

The majority of businesses were retailers, bars, restaurants and hotels and as the cost of living rises and we all watch our pennies, my appeal, on behalf of Cambridge businesses, is to support your local high streets and to keep spend local.

I live in the city and it is a pleasure to meet local managers of both independent and larger high street businesses. They all hire local people, pay business rates that partly stay local, often they’re using local suppliers, buying their lunch locally, having after-work drinks in a local pub or bar, going to a show locally and eating local as well.

One gets to know these people - they become part of your community, some even become friends. These interactions can provide huge health and wellbeing benefits and you should feel pleased - in fact, proud - to be supporting your city where you can.

As our thoughts turn to Christmas - yes, just 80 shopping days to go - then why don’t we all think about how we can maximise our spend locally? Let’s not buy online but instead agree to use our local high streets, meet the people in those stores, use the knowledge and skills they have, meet friends for drinks in your local, book Christmas parties locally and if you are buying presents for your staff, then support Cambridge city centre by buying the Love Cambridge gift card. Accepted by around 200 businesses, only redeemable in-store and in-person so you have to shop local, there is more information at love-cambridge.com/gift-card/.

It is simple really. Do you want a vibrant city with a great mix of independents and larger businesses to meet friends for coffee, or lunch, to shop, have drinks, eat dinner? Then you have to use it or lose it.

Read more from Ian Sandison and Cambridge BID

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