Hackney traders given mentoring to help regenerate town centre

Independent shops in Hackney Central have been learning how to make the most of their businesses after receiving mentoring from industry professionals.

Shops in Mare Street, Narrow Way and Clarence Road were advised on how to dress their windows, approach marketing and branding and develop business plans by retail consultants VisionOn.

Every independent store in the area has been invited to a series of seminars, and architects from Adams & Sutherland have been appointed to help create design guidelines with the aim of attracting as many customers as possible to the town centre.

Garry Herman, owner of CSC D�cor said: “It has given us a new outlook and ideas on things like signage and where best to display products, which we didn’t really think about in the past. I have already noticed more people looking in the shop window, whether it will increase sales we will have to see.”

The initiative comes after Hackney council secured �5.3million of funding from the Greater London Authority, money that will also be used for developing a retail village in the 12 empty archways in Morning Lane.

Cllr Guy Nicholson, Hackney Council’s cabinet member for regeneration said “The council is taking the lead in bringing forward the transformation of Hackney Central and making sure that this regeneration is inclusive. Using public funding alongside funding from the commercial sector we have formed a set of community objectives that sit alongside the interests of businesses.”

The seminars are open to every independent business in Hackney Central. For more information contact Ray on 07958344296, or ray@vision-on.co.uk.