Traders to survey town’s shoppers

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RETAILERS are conducting a survey to find out where their customers come and how they got there.

Whitley Bay Chamber of Trade is working with Newcastle Cycling Campaign to increase trade while at the same improve traffic flows.

The questionnaire will be in shops in the town over the coming weeks.

Karl McCracken, from the cycling campaign, said: “As a local resident I’d like to see the town flourishing and become a more people-friendly space – the sort of high street where you’d go just to see what was going on, and while you’re there find shops offering things that the big supermarkets just can’t do.

“The first step towards this is to find out more about the people who shop in Whitley Bay at the moment – how far they come to get into the town centre, and what mode of transport.”

Chamber chairman Karen Goldfinch added: “For the chamber members it’s a way to find out more about customers.

“We ran a pilot version of the survey in our store and it threw up some surprising results, both in terms of the way our customers’ homes are clustered.

“And the fact that although we often hear that people mainly drive into town, most people were walking to the shop.”

Results will be published at the campaign’s website – www.newcycling.org.uk – while individual shop results will be fed back to the participating businesses.

Mrs Goldfinch added: “These figures will be helpful to both businesses and residents.

“We hope to look at the results and see what we can do to make things better for our town.

“We’ve decided to open this survey up to all businesses in the town, not just to the chamber members, as it benefits all of us.

“If anyone would like any more information they can e-mail the chamber on enquiries@wbcot.co.uk.”