INDEPENDENT shopkeepers are being helped to boost their trade by encouraging more customers through the door.

Almost 30 traders in Tendring took part in two subsidised half day sessions on effective buying and visual merchandising.

The course, which was held at Weeley council offices, provided information, tips and tools needed to help buy, price and display stock and maximise sales.

It was put on by Tendring Council in partnership with the National Skills Academy for Retail. The courses are normally £85 but were offered for £10 per person.

There were shopkeepers from Clacton, Frinton, Brightlingsea and Dovercourt and their businesses included hairdressers, newsagent, craft shops, shabby chic furniture shops, a bike shop, jewellers, cakes and sweets and a pet shop.