Shoppers in Cardiff are being challenged to shun big-name chain stores and buy only from independent traders in a new online campaign.
City residents are being urged to only buy from independent shops for the whole of next week to help support local businesses.
Dozens of city traders have thrown their support behind the #ShopCardiff campaign, which has gained momentum through site Twitter.
City traders say we have become “a nation of lazy shoppers” by seeking the convenience of chain stores over quality products.
And organisers fear that if shoppers do not buy locally, many of the capital’s independent businesses could disappear from our communities.
Owen Derbyshire, who set up the online #ShopCardiff campaign, said: “It’s a fun challenge to get people engaging with the shops again and hopefully it will change people’s habits a bit.
“Just give it a go. You will genuinely be stunned by what you find in Cardiff because there’s a wealth of great independents.
“If we don’t support them, then they could be gone.”
The #ShopCardiff campaign will take place from Monday, March 25 to Monday, April 1.
The idea gathered pace several weeks ago after businesses contacted Owen through his Twitter account @TweetCardiff, which he uses to promote local events.
Owen, who works in marketing and PR, has since promoted the campaign online and by distributing thousands of flyers to independent businesses across the city.
The 22-year-old, of Cathays, said: “It has all been done on Twitter and Facebook and considering it has been just through these mediums the reception is absolutely incredible.”
Independent businesses including Welsh Food Box, Rules of Play, Bambeans and Pavilion Clothing have given their support to the initiative.
Several traders are also putting on special offers for the #ShopCardiff week in an attempt to entice new customers.
Chris Rees, who owns local produce delivery service Welsh Food Box, based in Pontcanna, helped inspire the #ShopCardiff campaign.
He said: “We wanted to do something following the recent horsemeat scandal, sensing that people are losing confidence in large retailers.
The 50-year-old dad of two, of Cowbridge, urged shoppers to support their local traders.
He said: “If people don’t reconnect with their local retailers that option may disappear from them in future and they will miss out on what is a great shopping experience.”
He added: “People have got into really bad habits by putting convenience over quality. We have become a nation of lazy shoppers. We want people to break that bad habit.
“We hope that people will be able to reconnect with some of the fantastic retailers in their local community. They may find it’s a fantastic experience.”
Visit the #ShopCardiff websitefor more details