With the Duchess of Northumberland facing a fierce backlash from Alnwick traders following controversial comments in the Gazette, one restaurant owner may have a solution to ensure locals want to stay in the town.
Claire Hanson, owner of Nood Food, is launching We Love Local, a discount scheme which allows people to gain discounts at a number of local shops and businesses.
Claire’s plan has received backing from more than 20 businesses in the town and she believes it can get more locals shopping in the town.
She said: “The focus is about building Alnwick as a town again, reinvesting in the economy, giving people a reason to shop locally, rather than going further afield.
“We’ve recently had some negativity about the town, but look at the restaurants; you have bespoke tearooms, niche little places, even Nood Food, which is the only clean eating venue in Northumberland.
“The focus is on showing what potential we have and if you can get a lot of your things in Alnwick, you’ll stay in Alnwick, and if you’re rewarded for continuously shopping, you’ll stay even longer.
“Look at the people who go back and shop at Sainsbury’s because of a Nectar card.”
But despite the support, Alnwick Chamber of Trade wants to know more about the proposals.
Chairman Carlo Biagioni said: “We would like to see more detail to see exactly what is involved so I can pass it on to the businesses in Alnwick.
However, Carlo added that the new discount scheme ‘could be an innovative way of working’.