A CAMPAIGN to encourage people to shop with independent stores in Leigh is set to kick off.

Totally Locally’s Fiver Fest campaign will see shops, cafés, restaurants, pubs and businesses put on special £5 offers for two weeks to encourage shoppers to veer away from big chains.

Totally Locally is an award-winning scheme which provides free marketing materials for towns to use to increase footfall.

It has been hugely successful in helping towns to buck the trend of declining high streets.

Lily Vinten, who runs Leigh jewellers, CJ Vinten Goldsmith, is taking part this year after seeing great results last year.

The 27-year-old, who took the business over from her dad eight years ago, said: “I was quite apprehensive at first on offering £5 deals as I didn’t think we could offer anything.

“But I decided to take part and it was really good. The first Saturday there was a constant flow.

“People come to us for something different but we are struggling against online shopping. I would encourage everyone running an indepedent business to take part.”

David Elcock, a Totally Locally volunteer for Leigh, said: “We’re joining in with the national Fiver Fest to showcase our town and the great independent shops and businesses we have here.

“We are so lucky to be surrounded by so many family-run businesses.

“Whether it’s physical shops around Leigh or the people working from their kitchen tables, this is an opportunity to come together, celebrate and support each other.

“If every adult in Leigh spent just £5 a week with their local independent shops and businesses instead of big online shops and chain stores it would mean £4.4 million going directly into our local economy.

“Many of us wouldn’t think twice about spending £5 in a coffee shop, so we’re encouraging people to think about where they spend that £5 in February. “

The Fiver Fest starts on Saturday, February 15 and runs for two weeks.

“Try an independent you haven’t tried before, go back to one you haven’t been in for a while. “Tiny actions like this can make a huge impact when lots of people vote with their feet.”

The Fiver Fest starts on Saturday, February 15 and runs for two weeks.

For more information, or if you would like to take part visit www.totallylocally.org