Belfast Telegraph

Newtownards pulls out the stops for shoppers

By Kathryn McGowan

Residents across North Down and Ards are being urged to support their local businesses this Christmas with 'Small Business Saturday.'

Ards Borough Council, Newtownards Chamber of Trade, and Ards Saturday Market, have combined to boost Christmas shopping in Newtownards, with a special promotional event set to create a buzz in the town on Saturday, December 7.

The festive fun-packed event, which takes place from 10 am - 2 pm, will play host to the U105 roadshow, featuring live music and prize giveaways, including a raffle to win a prize worth over £300.

Other prizes include an allotment from Ards Allotments, a meal voucher for Molly Browns and flowers from J McDonald florist.

Staff will also be handing out a discount voucher shopping booklet, with money off coupons and special offers from over 70 retailers in the town.

Throughout the day, the Town Hall Arts Centre will also play host to the first ever Creative Peninsula Craft Fayre, which brings unique, hand-crafted and inspired work from local makers and artists under one roof, while also offering festive treats and entertainment in a bid to appeal to both grown-ups and kids alike.

Meanwhile, radio listeners will have the chance to win each day in the build-up to the event.

Leigh Nelson, President of the Chamber of Trade, Newtownards, explains: "U105 and UTV will be promoting the event throughout the week beginning December 2, with U105 running a radio competition from 3pm each day, offering listeners the chance to win a hamper worth over £150.

"The hampers, which will be presented to the lucky winners at the U105 promotional event on Saturday December 7, contain a range of goodies, donated by traders from the Newtownards Chamber of Trade, will give people an idea of the sorts of great gifts they can pick up in Newtownards town."

Chair of Ards Borough Council's Development Committee, Councillor Trevor Cummings, is optimistic the promotional event will encourage a much-needed rise in trade to the area: "The Council and Newtownards Chamber of Trade have worked incredibly hard to promote shopping in Newtownards over the past number of years, with the introduction of discount voucher shopping booklets and advertising campaigns.

"We are hoping that the addition of the U105 promotional event will create a buzz and help drive business to the town this Christmas."

NI Conservative Mark Brotherston added: "In Northern Ireland the majority of our businesses are small to medium sized. It is the hard-working people behind these companies, high street shops, manufacturers and other services, who are responsible for creating jobs and getting our economy moving."

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