The Parish Council has contracted the services of award-winning retail consultant Graham Soult to support Durham businesses through the difficulties of Covid-19 and to help give the city centre a boost.
Graham has been working with local businesses in the city over the last six months to help them set up and improve their online presence and operations.
Described as “a North-East Mary Portas”, Graham is a high streets task force expert, retail consultant, blogger and media commentator, as well as the vice-chairman of Durham Business Club.
Graham’s recent work has seen major improvements and increased footfall to Chester-le-Street’s Front Street.
Graham has been promoting independent retailers in the city and working with the Parish Council; with the goal of securing a variety of new retail and leisure occupants for empty business units.
With experience of generating around 400,000 impressions on social media sites such as Twitter each month, Graham has been leading on a concerted social media campaign – under the @IndieDurhamCity strapline – to increase footfall in Durham.
Parish council Chair Coun. Elizabeth Scott said: “We are absolutely delighted to be working with Graham Soult to support our local businesses in these extremely difficult times. Graham has a fantastic national reputation for delivering excellent results for city centres across the UK. For many businesses, our immediate concern is obviously making sure that they have the best possible support with their online presence and operations in response to the Government’s lockdown measures and all the pressures this brings to our retail sector. But more widely, we want to give the city a real boost post-pandemic with a huge social media campaign promoting Durham as a place to visit and shop with your family, with the aim of achieving greater footfall, empty units filled, and a more diverse offer for consumers.
Graham’s services are funded by the Parish Council and available free of charge to any local business within our Parish.
Find out more about the work which Graham has been doing on our behalf over the last few months in his reports below: