Social enterprise to shine a light on small businesses on Norfolk Day

Buy Local Norfolk show their support for Norfolk Day. Left to right, Mark Barton, Julie Hunt, Glynn

Buy Local Norfolk show their support for Norfolk Day. Left to right, Mark Barton, Julie Hunt, Glynn Burrows, Judith Glanville, Martin Lake.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

As the first ever Norfolk Day approaches, we will be highlighting different groups and people getting involved in the celebrations. This week focuses on a social enterprise which will recognise small businesses.

Norfolk Day Logo

Norfolk Day Logo - Credit: Archant

Norfolk consumers are being encouraged to embrace the wealth of local businesses in their county on the inaugural Norfolk Day.

Buy Local Norfolk is a social enterprise which aims to raise the profile of small businesses, from food producers to design agencies to tradesmen, among their customers and peers.

Since a group of directors took charge of the former Norwich City Council initiative, membership has grown from 28 to around 240, with 13 new members joining in March alone.

Julie Hunt is one of five volunteer directors at Buy Local Norfolk.

She said: 'All of us directors have our own businesses – we do this for the love of Norfolk.

'We support local businesses to support the local economy. For every pound that is spent, an estimated £3 comes back to the community.'

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The group is in talks with Norfolk Chamber of Commerce about a Norfolk Day event. Shaped around its Buy Local Norfolk challenge, it would see consumers challenged to 'buy local' for a week, whether on their weekly shop, getting a coffee on the way to work or organising some home improvements.

'We're encouraging people to look beyond food to services as well,' Ms Hunt said.

'By getting people to think about spending locally, they are keeping money in the community.'

Smart technology installation firm Customised in Loddon is a long-standing member of Buy Local Norfolk.

Anna Gamble, who runs the business with husband Kris, said: 'Everyone is a consumer, whether personal or business, and there are so many benefits to buying local, whether economic or environmental.'

Buy Local Norfolk publishes two member directories a year, and has an online directory on its website as well as a members' events page and a blog which any member can contribute to.

Norfolk Day, supported by the EDP, Norwich Evening News and BBC Radio Norfolk, is taking place on Friday July 27.

?To share your ideas on how you plan to celebrate Norfolk Day email, tweet @norfolk or log on to the Norfolk Day Facebook group.

People should include contact names and numbers/emails, locations and times when submitting event information.

Norfolk Day online shop

An online shop has been launched selling Norfolk Day marketing material which event organisers can display on the day.

The shop is selling a four-pack of flags, four-pack of A3 posters and 20 balloons at £4, while 5m of bunting is £7.50.

Celebration packs containing all of the above are available for £15.

Norfolk Day takes place on Friday, July 27 and is intended as a day of fun in which individuals, community groups and businesses are encouraged to get involved by hosting or participating in events.

The initiative was launched by the EDP and Norwich Evening News in partnership with BBC Radio Norfolk and has the backing of business and community organisations who are planning events for the day.

Details of events will be revealed in the newspaper, online and via social media.

To order Norfolk Day materials, visit The Norfolk Day Shop.

Estimated delivery time is 28 days.