Foodie Friday in Stockport
Foodie Friday is a monthly street food event that regularly attracts thousands of people to Stockport Old Town each month. The event features 15 street food traders, alongside a number of indoor market traders who adapt their traditional offer to meet the demands of a night-time visitor profile. Following the government’s national lockdown, Foodie Friday was cancelled with no guaranteed certainty to when it would likely return. This case study shows an innovative approach to supporting the community of street food traders, who are all small local businesses, as well as supporting good charitable causes during a time of great national crisis. This resulted in Foodie Friday adapting its offer to raise £21,205 to provide 3,000+ free meals to hard-working local NHS staff as well as running a socially distanced street food event at Weir Mill which raised £1,400 through ticket sales for the Greater Manchester Mayor’s Homelessness Charity.
Prior to the current crisis, an event like Foodie Friday was seen as an example of best practice for driving footfall in a town centre and encouraging private investment to stimulate a local economy. The event is estimated to generate £500,000 of additional income into the town centre each year.
It was recognised very early on that the delivery of Foodie Friday would be at threat because of the impact of coronavirus and the organisers worked very quickly to establish an alternative method of engaging with the community to support both local traders and the local NHS.
This case study shows the innovative way the organisers approached this project, including providing local street food traders with a regular income during a national crisis, as well as fostering a strong community spirit within both the NHS and the general public who were able to contribute to the campaign. The Sunday Social at Weir Mill resulted in a safe and successful consultation / engagement activity with Capital & Centric during a difficult time which helped promote Weir Mill as an exciting destination for future animation and activity. Both activities also helped raise money for charity, with the NHS campaign raising £21,205 and the Sunday Social at Weir Mill raising £1,400 for the Greater Manchester Mayor Homelessness charity.