Shop “local” or shop “big”?


Here is a good one. What exactly is “local”? Um – I will use the simplest dictionary definition that I could come across.

Local” implies pertaining to, characteristic of, or restricted to a particular place or particular places.

What is the general characteristic of my community? One thing for sure, it is not static and it has been evolving for some time. It is diverse in all aspects that one would think of. While it used to be classed as “under-privileged”, I disagree that this is still the case. However, due to that background, I find that the local shops remain designed to serve that very “underprivileged” community which relied on welfare benefits.  Very cheap alcohol drinks. Scratch cards. Pay-point stations for bill payments and energy top-ups. Stock levels are comparatively lower and cost more than in the bigger supermarkets. The buildings are old, cramped and undoubtedly crumbling. A huge disappointment really…

A true reflection of how times have moved on is the number of car drivers in the community now who do their shopping from the modern, spacious and comfortable supermarket establishments.

Not just that, more people are also taking advantage of online shopping and the delivery services provided by the supermarkets.

Shopping delivery Lidl Hunsletrg

It is not all about online shopping and being a car driver you know. People still catch buses and taxis to go to their favourite supermarkets…

Recently, I started using the online energy top-up service, so I no longer need to use the pay-point stations in the local shops.

I think local shops are losing business and should they want to stick around for much longer, they ought to start looking at ways of representing the communities they serve. A brilliant example of how the supermarkets are doing this to stay in business is Morrisons. They have a section on continental commodities. Everyone and anyone can now shop at Morrisons. People are being encouraged to eat healthy nowadays, and our local shops should work on this as well.  I prefer going to the supermarkets where I have a choice when it comes to food and household commodities. I also find that I get good deals at these supermarkets.


This article was written by Sithembile Moyo using our Community Reporters website

2 Replies to “Shop “local” or shop “big”?”

  1. I agree that its now less about feeling a necessary, historic loyalty to often failing /drab local shops &amp more about encouraging them to meet evolving customer needs &amp expectations including recognising the changing cultural make-up of communities. Guess there’s plenty of fish &amp chips opportunities in LS10 but few places to buy cassava ! Hopefully soon the big boys of Asda &amp Aldi will be setting up in Middleton but not I hope at the expense of some potentially creative &amp responsive small business set ups
    Definitely food for thought to feed into

  2. The Venus supermarket in Domestic Street, Holbeck, where the old Kwiksave once was, is well stocked and worth a visit. Sadly it seems to be underused, despite the staff being really friendly. There’s a good supply of fresh fruit and vegetables as well as staples like baked beans, milk and so on, and a good cafe/takeaway. Too many people rule themselves out of even going through the doors, thinking that there won’t be anything there for them, without even taking a look. With this attitude, it’s not surprising that new shops don’t come into the area. It’s not only retailers who need to change their attitude.

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