Page 26 - MarketTimesAugust2019
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26 MARKET TIMES • AUGUST 2019
 How shopping on Todmorden the Totally Locally movement
By NICOLA GOULD
THE Totally Locally campaign to encourage people to buy from their local markets and shops now has a worldwide following — but it all started on Todmorden market in West Yorkshire following a holiday in rural Portugal.
Chris Sands, who runs his own design, mar- keting and brand business, is the man behind the global initiative.
In 2010 Chris was enjoying a family holiday in Viana do Castelo, a thriving town in Portugal, when he started to wonder why the place was so busy and prosperous considering its location in the middle of nowhere.
“I sat in the square and watched the bank man- ager visit the bakery, the butcher go to the local café, then the baker delivering to the café,” Chris said.
The penny dropped that if all local businesses bought and sold to each other, it created a thriv- ing small business community.
And so the Shaw family ditched the supermar- ket and began shopping in the market and in local shops, knowing it was putting money into the hands of hard-working market traders and shopkeepers rather than multi-nationals.
One day Chris was shopping with his family in Todmorden market near their home when he re- alised how the Portuguese model was working well in his local market.
“I went to one of the local butchers on the mar- ket and asked if he had any goat I could buy,” Chris said.
To his amazement the butcher got on the phone to a local farmer and asked when she would be killing a goat.
And with that the seeds of the Totally Locally
Chris Sands, who started the Totally Locally campaign to encourage people to shop locally, is pictured where it all began on Todmorden Market in West Yorkshire
  Todmorden is a traditional indoor market
initiative were sown.
Although Chris left school to take up an ap-
prenticeship at 16, he has since built up a repu- tation as a design professional and runs his own business — The Good Company — specialising in design, branding and marketing, so he had all the right expertise.
“At the time there was a bit of a movement to encourage people to shop locally to support the high street, but it was mainly about shops dis- playing a Shop Local sticker,” Chris said.
He won a tender to run a campaign to promote local shopping in Halifax for Calderdale Coun- cil and that gave him the experience to launch the campaign.
“People tended to say they needed to shop in the supermarket for convenience, but we worked
out that if every adult spent just £5 per week in local shops it would bring £40 million into the local economy every year,” he said.
That statistic proved a game changer, and Chris decided to launch the initiative nationally to try to make a difference for small shops, businesses and communities across the country.
And he hasn’t made a penny from it.
“At an early stage a colleague suggested we just give it away free and we ended up doing that,” Chris said.
At the same time Chris admits it helps his own business through the leads it provides.
So far towns and councils across the UK have taken it up and communities as far afield as Dal- las and New York in the United States, as well as towns in Australia and New Zealand are com- mitted to Totally Locally.
The furthest flung Totally Locally town is Waikiki Island in New Zealand, which is as far away from Todmorden on the other side of the globe as it is possible to get.
“We have had a big flurry of interest recently and a further 47 towns and wanting to get on board,” Chris said.
Totally Locally works because it is simple. From the website users can access a blueprint for getting a community to shop locally, from a downloadable flyer to publicising a first meet- ing, to a set of rules for meetings and a Declara- tion of Independents that shopkeepers and market traders can display.
Meanwhile Chris remains busy with his day job which has recently included branding and marketing the newly refurbished Piece Hall in Halifax and rebranding and bringing a little-used part of Borough Market back into a bustling market area.
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