As many of you will be aware, there is quite a debate raging in the village about the shopping we have here.
The shops say the shoppers ‘ain’t buying enough, ‘cos they ain’t very good at it’ and the shoppers are saying. . .well, let’s just wait to find out what the shoppers have to say. We’ll cover all sides of the debate, on WeLoveOurVillage.com. Although we do know on what side our village-purchased bread is buttered and believe that our shops have a right to be heard first and longest. After all they are the ones who buy things first before other people can buy them and lots more of things too.
This week, in two parts Malcolm Haxton from OVIS (Our Village’s Independent Shops) spells out his vision for the future of retail in the village which is in turn spelled out in the “Big Plan for Developing Retailing in our Village to 2020.”
Malcolm Haxton writes:
“I have a dream that someday, someone from outside the village will come here and buy something and will be fairly happy with it. It’s a dream I share with my fellow OVIS members, and by God I will not rest until that dream becomes a reality.”
In layman’s terms our Big Plan for Developing Retailing in Our Village, lays out a pretty attainable vision for shopping in the village. Having worked with a number of leading retail consultancies and specialists we are ready to spell out the changes we need in the village if we are to retain our position as a place to shop for things you really need or if you haven’t the time or money to get to somewhere with better shopping.
Here are the first items we have in our ‘Big Plan for Developing Retail in our Village to 2020.’ OVIS demands these changes in the shopping habits of people in the village. Some may say that we are too focussed on meeting the needs of’socio-demographic segments with affluence and mobility and that we ignoring other segements including the poor, the sick and the old. But the BPFDRIOV demonstrated that this is not how we are looking at it.
Many of the changes we will suggest later in the week – make our shopping more accessible to our villagers by extending opening hours by up to 25 minutes and phasing in more areas where people can stand and chat or take 3 hours over a coffee. Indeed one of these areas has already been assessed and I can disclose it is near-prime village land with panoramic views of the local thoroughfares – it’s on the village roundabout.
Now, if your read the demand of my members I am sure you will see that many are just common sense – a few simple rules that will enhance the shopping experience for literally dozens of better off and active shoppers in the area – “The Professional Shoppers” as I like to call them and after all if you’re designing Wembley you don’t do that with the local village team in mind:
And believe me we are dreaming of designing Wembley.
If your loyal WLOV readers take their time to study them – and resist poo-pooing them - I am sure that anyone who has shopped or tried to shop in the village will see they are perfectly fair.