The plea to ‘shop local’ has stood the traders of one quarter of Spalding in good stead for more than 50 years – and is still doing so today.
The Crescent, Vine Street and Francis Street area of the town has always been fiercely independent, and although the names above the doors may be different, business owners there are still using the motto that was so important to their predecessors more than half a century later.
As far back as the 1960s shopkeepers from the area realised just how special what they had to offer was, and they joined forces to promote their uniqueness under the banner of the Crescent Traders’ Association.
They agreed to promote their businesses and make people aware of the great shopping experience they could provide and to kick start their campaign they held a four-day exhibition in the Corn Exchange (now the South Holland Centre).
The event was organised by Roy Revill, of Revills, and Jim Inkley, of Inkley’s Menswear, supported by other shops and businesses.
Programmes for the pioneering exhibition – priced 6d each – carried a competition entry form on the back offering customers the chance to win a £5 voucher – a very generous prize back in the Swinging Sixties.
Inside, the brochure listed the names of 16 exhibitors including Revills, Inkley’s Menswear and Stennett’s Jewellers. Others included Adlingtons TV and Radio, C E Pask Models, H G Frost Outfitters, Moneys, Ford Stationers, Clapson Antiques, Image Photographers, Decor Wallpapers, Spalding Carpet Centre and M Bean, who had two shops.
The leaflet described The Crescent as ‘unique’ with ‘shops of every description, fine window displays’, while ‘all are privately owned, value for money’. It could have been written about today’s shops.
Many things may have changed over the past 50 years but the bond of the Crescent traders and their commitment to Spalding remains as strong as ever – so, in the words of our independent shopkeepers – please, remember to support your town and shop local to ensure this unique area of Spalding is still going strong in another 50 years.