Shrewsbury’s first-ever online marketplace has opened its “virtual doors”, with town centre businesses offering a variety of gift vouchers and experiences for sale. 

Support Shrewsbury officially launched on Monday, April 27, and has been developed by Shrewsbury BID, supported by My Shrewsbury magazine, to help businesses create an income during the coronavirus lockdown. 

The website – www.supportshrewsbury.co.uk – is open to all businesses in Shrewsbury and is free to join. Traders can use the platform to sell vouchers and experiences online. These may be used to buy products now or when shops reopen following the crisis. 

Stacey Hill, owner of Oberon in Wyle Cop, and part of the steering group which created Support Shrewsbury, said it would provide a much-needed boost for the town centre. 

“I am so excited by the launch of Support Shrewsbury,” she said. “I’m bursting to get Shrewsbury bustling again and can’t wait for our shops to be open, but in the meantime this website gives everyone a chance to make sales and stay connected during these difficult times. 

“We’ll do whatever it takes to get Shrewsbury open and thriving again, and if we have to set up provisions for social distancing then that’s what we’ll do. 

“With Support Shrewsbury you can get ready for that moment and buy a gift voucher for all your favourite shops in Shrewsbury – I would urge everyone to take a look and help support the town centre at a time when we all really need it.” 

Seb Slater, executive director of Shrewsbury BID, said Support Shrewsbury would grow and evolve over the coming weeks and months. 

He said: “We hope it will develop into a really useful platform with a number of valuable elements, from creating sales for businesses to providing a means for them to connect with each other. 

“It will also be a virtual business community where business owners can share ideas and support each other, both during the coronavirus lockdown and beyond. 

“We would like to thank the team at Web Orchard and everyone on the Shrewsbury BID steering group who have worked so hard to get this off the ground so quickly.” 

Katy Rink, editor of My Shrewsbury magazine, said: “This is a not-for-profit venture by businesses for businesses and is entirely free to join. We hope everyone will want to get involved – there’s still time to sign up and join the marketplace as a business and of course we’d love you all to start shopping there too. 

The whole town has gone online, so start browsing today! Your support today could make a big difference to Shrewsbury’s future.”  

Visit www.supportshrewsbury.co.uk to get involved.