Image Source: David Locke
More than 600 businesses have now signed up to North Yorkshire Buy Local
Chloe Shakesby

North Yorkshire online marketplace sees more than 600 businesses sign up

A North Yorkshire organisation has seen more than 600 businesses sign up to trade online.

More than 600 businesses have now signed up to North Yorkshire Buy Local, the online marketplace launched by the County Council during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Many local suppliers are plugging the gap to help the most vulnerable access goods and services.

James Knox, managing director of Yorkshire Dales Meat, commented: “We are now doing door-step deliveries, which we have never done before, so that’s very different to what we were doing.

“We are getting repeat orders, which I think says it all really, doesn’t it?

“All the time we are looking at new avenues for how we can sell our product until the lockdown ends, but is pretty tough, it’s hard work.

“We have to be proactive and look for business.”

County Council leader councillor Carl Les said: “North Yorkshire is England’s largest county, rich in rural areas and market towns and villages with a wealth of local producers and suppliers and tradespeople and independent start-ups.

“During lockdown some of these local businesses have come into their own as people have turned to them to plug the gaps for their supplies and their needs.

“Many have also played a part in helping those who are shielded and isolated and been part of the great community fight against coronavirus as part of Team North Yorkshire.

“We want to support these businesses now and into the longer term with Buy Local so that they can help to help make this current preference for the local into an enduring part of people’s long-term choices.

“We hope Buy Local will help our businesses remain resilient at the present time but also help them to develop a key role for themselves in serving North Yorkshire’s communities into the future.

“Many businesses can work safely during the pandemic, but customers who are isolating at home don’t always know what’s available.

“We were sure there would be demand for a place where businesses can set out their offer and people can find what they need locally, and the reaction to Buy Local shows this to be the case.

“I urge all eligible businesses who have not yet registered on Buy Local to do so now.

“It is not only a valuable tool for businesses and the public during the pandemic, but will create a comprehensive one-stop shop for North Yorkshire into the future.”

Sam Spence, who runs Crafts of Thirsk, was among the first to register on Buy Local.

She commented: “I registered in the morning after seeing it on social media and got a new order before 2pm that afternoon off the back of it.

“It took me only a minute to register and I’ve shared it with loads of other people.”

Sam closed her shop in the market place when restrictions were introduced, but received requests from customers.

“People started messaging to ask whether I could post or deliver craft materials.

“I spoke to people about it and realised how important it is for mental health and keeping occupied.”

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