Why supporting your local independents is more important than ever

10 September 2020
By Sarah Nelson

Restrictions are beginning to be eased and London is slowly emerging from Lockdown. It’s hard to get away from hearing about the damage Covid 19 has reeked on the economy and local businesses, and so now it’s more important than ever to show your love for the remarkable independent businesses that make up our neighbourhoods, particularly the amazing variety, innovation and uniqueness on offer in East London.

When you think about strolling down your own high street or local precinct, you start to feel the comfort and familiarity; the personality and character that tells you ‘this is my community’, and we can’t afford to lose this. Small business owners are fundamentally important to the communities that they live and work in. It is these entrepreneurs who play an important contributing role, not just through job creation and boosting GDP, but also by building that sense of community through personal relationships with customers and residents, the intimate touch that plays a key role in any communities’ health and wellbeing.

The necessity for these small businesses to stand out above all overs, often means that innovation and the need to serve the community is at the top of their priority list. They will also have less environmental impact through smaller infrastructure and benefits to air quality. By visiting our local independents, we are also playing a key role in lowering carbon footprints and creating healthier communities.

So, ok there is a new ‘normal’ for the foreseeable future…but if you are able why not (safely) grab a coffee or bite to eat at the local café, search for that birthday present in the distinctive gift shop, rummage for gems at your local, charity shop or bespoke market or visit the community centre that makes your neighborhood distinct.

Foundation for Future London is supporting existing small businesses and those who have a budding new business concept through our ‘New Ideas’ small grant scheme. Applicants must live, work or study in the boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Waltham Forest or Newham. We want to hear from you if you have a new entrepreneurial idea that you want to test or grow, if you want to develop or bring a project to life, or simply aspire to access training and skills that can better your business development skill set. Find out more here xx

The Foundation is also supporting #BecauseImALondoner campaign in conjunction with the London Alliance. The campaign sets about to rebuild consumer confidence, and the Foundation wants to encourage all to safely reclaim and rebuild their communities collectively and celebrate the diversity that stitches the community together. The Foundation is also fully committed to buying, hiring and training locally.

To find out more about the campaign visit

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About the author

Sarah Nelson

Sarah joined the Future for London Foundation team in May 2020 as Programme and Communication Director.

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