A LOCAL business owner is hoping Small Business Saturday will 'highlight' Carlisle's independent retailers.

Small Business Saturday UK is a grassroots, non-commercial campaign, which highlights small business success and encourages consumers to 'shop local' and support small businesses in their communities.

The day itself takes place on the first Saturday in December each year, but the campaign aims to have a 'lasting impact' on small businesses.

Andrew Davenport owns two local businesses, Get-Modified and Get-Pierced, and is set to launch his third, the Buttered Cat cafe, in 2024

Ahead of the local business-focused weekend, Andrew gave his thoughts on how he hopes the community gets behind Carlisle's independent retailers.

He said: "I think Small Business Saturday is a great thing to use and highlight local businesses and the people who work in them.

"It’s pretty clear when you walk through town that big chains are choosing to either downscale or vacate the high street and move to more online-based business models to save on rent, business rates, and even staff costings as smaller units will require fewer bodies to function in a smaller unit."

Andrew also shared his experience juggling the ownership of his two businesses whilst opening the new Kinmont Arcade cafe, which he hopes can become a hub for local businesses. 

He said: "We’ve been fortunate with Get-Modified & Get-Pierced as they’re not a Business Model you can do online, they’re very much an in-person based service and we’re very lucky that both of these Businesses do incredible with word of mouth recommendation so we’re usually kept steadily busy year round even in what we’d call our quiet periods.

"With The Buttered Cat even when we were in the talks of opening a cafe with nothing concrete, we knew we wanted to keep as much locally sourced as we physically could.

"We’re sourcing our coffee from Bruce & Lukes, who then put me in touch with a local company for all of our packaging and takeaway containers.

"When we were looking into the food we want to serve, we looked at the local markets that come into the city regularly and have been in touch with a couple of businesses that we would like to stock.

"Ideally we’d love for The Buttered Cat to be a hub of locally sourced goods helping to promote each other and build a network of other likeminded businesses to support each other."