We’ve been told a hundred times over the past few weeks to stay at home, to shut the shops and only leave the house for essentials. As much as these measures and the introduction of ‘social-distancing’ are for our safety, these new rules could have a severe impact on the local businesses amble have championed for years.
BoJo instructed all pubs, clubs and non-essential businesses to shut their doors in March, risking the livelihood of some of our favourite small businesses and the independent culture Chester has nurtured over the past few years.
Of course, the Chancellor has promised £330bn to small businesses. We Cestrians have always looked for ways to work together as a community, and this time, in particular, calls for us to get as creative as possible in our methods.
Here are a few ways we can work together to support some of our favourite local businesses:
Luckily, a few of our favourite food spots are available for delivery. So if you’re not feeling like queuing up outside your local supermarket, why not order some Paysan chicken for tea?
A lot of independent businesses are hopping on apps like Deliveroo and Justeat, so why not take the night off cooking and treat yourself? A few of note: Chip’d, Moules A Go-Go and a bunch of the Chester Market gems. Please note that some are Collection Only.
Meltdown is only accepting telephone orders but is offering a range of tasty ready meals and Raclette nights for two (at home), and DoughDough has been doing the same. The Suburbs are offering a rather tempting steak offer and a regular Sunday roast.
If you want to enjoy some top nosh from home, your best bet is to check out their social media for more info.
Shop from home
Last year we started to see places like Chalk, Cavern of the Curious Gnome and Jaunty Goat introduce their lines of merchandise. Now you can order them to be delivered to your house, as well as a variety of other yummy goodies. Jaunty Goat and Chalk are selling their ceramic mugs and in house coffee blends on their online stores.
Our favourite shop (that’s more than just a shop) 2nd floor also has a Depop for all their current stock in case you’re feeling like taking a chance on the lucky dips or investing in some fashionable jewellery.
You can also source a lot of fresh, local supplies online, from milk, cheese and veg, to special occasion treats. Check out The Maker’s Market, Farmer’s Meats butchers, Bricklands fish, seafood, game, Francis Thomas greengrocer, Chester Market traders (to name but a few options).
Buy a gift card
This is quite possibly one of the best ways to support your favourite shop or business. Not only are you investing in them now with the intent of buying in the future. It’s just a bloody beautiful thing to do; a lot of businesses will take this as a gesture of customer loyalty in these uncertain times. If you can afford this, we recommending emailing in the first instance (if it’s not an obvious option) and seeing what’s possible.
Engage with them on social media
Interacting with businesses on social media makes a difference. By following, interacting or tagging a business on social media, you’re increasing their chances of being exposed to new audiences and adding to their local community. Regardless as to whether they’ve put the shutters down for a little while or they’re running only as a takeaway. Engaging with businesses on social media makes a difference in the long run.
If your favourite business is shut until further notice or you’re financially unable to support your favourite local, give them a follow on social media, tag them in an old picture from the last time you visited or leave them a glowing review on Google/Facebook. Positive support like this motivates owners to push through and makes them look good to future potential customers.
Let’s club together to make sure Chester is just as awesome as we left it.