Just over a year ago, Stephen Atherton of Hunters estate agency ay Heswall Cross became Chairman of the Heswall and District Business Association – or HDBA for short.
In that time Stephen has worked hard to revitalise the association, increase its membership, and harness both businesses and the community to help boost the local economy.
Stephen says: “I’ve always wanted to play some sort of role within our business community and decided to volunteer for the role of Chair. The HDBA has been in operation in many forms for more than fifty years, but times have moved on and I’m keen for it to keep pace with them.
“One thing that has diminished since the start is that feeling of community spirit, and local businesses can help foster and grow it and help themselves at the same time. In my opinion, being a member of HDBA is much more than just paying a yearly membership fee – it’s about supporting your local community, creating a nice environment in which to live and work, and also promoting everything we have to offer.
“Heswall used to be the go to place, a focal point on the map and my goal is to put the town back where it belongs. I want HDBA to create a supportive networking group to be proud of, one that connects Heswall businesses in mutually beneficial ways for many years to come.”
The rise of the Internet and online shopping has had an impact on most high streets, and Heswall has not escaped. But Stephen believes the Association can promote the merits of the town to a wider audience.
“There’s no point,” he explains, “being a best kept secret. It’s time to shout about our diversified high street offer which supports both major brands and niche retailers.
“By joining Heswall and District Business Association you’ll meet an enthusiastic and positive group of likeminded business folk. You’ll be able to voice your concerns and ideas so that collectively we can develop the area and make changes where we can.
“You’ll receive publicity through social media platforms and our Visit Heswall website. And you can become part of the Heswall Loyalty Card System, which enables local shoppers to access promotions and special offers across multiple local businesses.
“You even receive discounted gym membership, which could come in handy once Christmas is out of the way.”
Stephen points out there there are more than 300 businesses in Heswall, and believes that collectively they could make a huge difference to the life of the town.
“The more the merrier,” he adds, “because obviously there’s strength in numbers.”
If you would like to enrol as a member of HDBA, or would like any additional information about membership, please contact Stephen on 0151 342 2444, or Andrew Cain on 0151 342 1769. Alternatively, you can visit the Association’s website by clicking or tapping here.