Forget Black Friday! Make it a Black & Gold Weekend by supporting your local shops in Wolverhampton.

That’s the message from city ambassador, Ninder Johal, as he urged residents to visit the new Shop Local website promoting city businesses during lockdown and in the run up to Christmas.

More than 230 shops and businesses have already registered their details for the city’s new ‘Shop Local’ website, which has been set up City of Wolverhampton Council with support from Wolverhampton and Bilston Business Improvement Districts, and other city stakeholders.

And, with the Government giving shoppers the green light to return to non essential shops under strict coronavirus social distancing guidance, from Wednesday 2 December now is the time to get behind your local shops.

If every working adult in the city pledged to spend an extra £5 a week more locally instead of with the major online retailers it would boost the local economy by £780,000 per week – and help keep hundreds of people in employment.

Chair of the Wolverhampton Town Deal Board and Black Country LEP Board Member, Ninder Johal, said: “These are difficult times for all and it is important that communities pull together to support their own.

“Wolverhampton has a proud history of standing together and the shop local campaign is another example of that.

“Your businesses need your help now so, whether it be online or visiting your local shops when they reopen after lockdown, lets help keep them going so they remain part of your community.”

Councillor Steve Evans, Cabinet Member for City Environment, added: “Covid-19 has hit our shops and businesses hard and they need all the support they can get in the lead up to Christmas.

“So before checking out the online giants take a look at what’s on offer from our local shops online - where you’ll be able to order or buy your goods and presents - and make that extra fiver you spend this weekend black and gold.

“We very much value the presence of our small businesses and the creative local people behind them and you can help them survive through these tough economic times.
“These are the businesses that help give Wolverhampton its own identity and character.”

In readiness for non essential shops reopening, City of Wolverhampton Council is working with city partners, including the BIDs and police as well as retailers across 5 key shopping areas: city centre, Bilston, Wednesfield, Tettenhall and Dudley Road.

A central one way walking route will remain in place in the city centre’s shopping core, Dudley Street, with shoppers encouraged to keep left and stay apart.

Businesses should check Wolves in Business for all the latest coronavirus guidance and support available to them regarding reopening.