Norfolk bid to aid local businesses

Broadland district council is to launch a new “loyalty card” to allow local businesses to compete with the chain stores and supermarkets in a bid to make it cheaper for people to shop locally.

Broadland district council is to launch a new “loyalty card” to allow local businesses to compete with the chain stores and supermarkets in a bid to make it cheaper for people to shop locally.

Broadland Life is being launched at the end of this month and will give every council tax payer in the district a card offering discounts at local shops, restaurants, leisure centres and businesses.

Businesses who sign up will get direct marketing access to more than 54,000 homes paying council tax in the area, advertisements for their offers in a Broadland Life handbook and monthly adverts of their offers in council publications.

Stuart Clancy, portfolio holder for economic development at Broadland, said: “It will allow small businesses to use the card as a loyalty card, reward card or incentive card to get people to shop local and support local businesses.

“It could be anything from a hotel or bed and breakfast businesses to a leisure centre or a coffee shop and it is up to them what they offer and how they want to use it.

“We will promote the businesses through our publications as well as posters and stickers. And we hope the bigger picture will be helping to support local businesses and their sustainability.”

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“Bigger businesses have already got their own schemes, like Tesco and Boots, so this is giving an opportunity for local businesses. And it will not cost them anything.”

As an example he said an Indian restaurant could offer a five per cent discount on quiet nights. Businesses will also be able to dip in and out of the scheme.

Vince Purcell, who runs Bramley's restaurant in Aylsham, said he thought it was an excellent idea.“The town could do with a boost, especially on market days,” he said.

Publicity will start this month and the card will be sent out at the end of March with council tax bills and a letter explaining how it works. Householders will be able to apply for extra cards.

Businesses can get involved by calling the district council on 01603 430538.