Have you ever noticed how communities and neighbourhoods tend to define themselves or get defined by how “prosperous” their residents collectively appear to be? It may not be all too obvious at first thought, but if you know exactly what to look out for, you’ll catch it in even the subtlest of communications. Think of an eager listener from Edgbaston, calling in to BBC Radio 2’s running competition with the hope of winning some prize money – the radio DJ hosting the competition would likely associate that caller with long-running financial success, perhaps even going as far as commenting on whether or not the caller really needs the money they’re trying to win, as a simple result of where they reside. You’ve perhaps also heard the phrase “from the wrong side of the tracks” bandied about on more than one occasion, but each of those occasions inevitably leads right back to the association we sometimes unwittingly tie to a particular community or neighbourhood.


This success-to-neighbourhood-appearance association is precisely the reason why buying local matters; why supporting the businesses operated by people in your neighbourhood, for your neighbourhood matters. The importance of keeping each bit of money which enters your local community circulating within your community has economic development implications you might not readily see on the surface. If for example you do indeed live in Birmingham (whatever part of town) and you’re seeking out some specialised accounting services, making use of the local accountants Birmingham has listed as part of your options goes a very long way in elevating your neighbourhood’s perceived value, status, and actual value. The same applies for every other industry, be it visiting a doctor, buying a new set of tyres or even the choice of school you put your kids it. For every pound that enters your local community and circulates within it, the overall value of your community is raised. This value very quickly translates into some visible benefits, such as perhaps the local accountants having more disposable cash to further spend within the community, even if it’s on something like watering their lawn more to make their surroundings look more appealing, or perhaps tipping a waiter at a local restaurant a bit more for a better service.

There are a number of different ways in which we could develop this idea by following the path and impact of each pound circulating within a local neighbourhood, but the gist of the matter is that by buying local, you give your neighbours the power to improve their lives and maintain a high quality and standard of living, which will inevitably spill over into an improved quality of your own life. It goes beyond a chain series of nice green lawns and rose beds to complete well-manicured gardens. By circulating your money within your community you give some of your more people-centric neighbours the chance to perhaps throw a nice barbeque for your entire street, or block, etc., or perhaps start up a club of some sort which will keep the kids in your neighbourhood occupied and out of trouble.

Development and the prosperity to go with it is extremely infectious. You’d be surprised just how quickly your immediate environment develops and flourishes as a result of you simply making the choice to buy local and encouraging others to follow suit.

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