Altrincham Vintage Market – My Altrincham
Introduce your business and tell us what you’ve been up to recently?
I run the vintage and handmade element of Altrincham’s Vintage, Handmade and Producers’ Market which takes place on the third Sunday of every month between 11am and 3.30pm. I also set up No. 16 Vintage on the top floor of Trader’s Outlet on The Downs, and run Magpies and I PR which is aimed at independent handmade and vintage businesses.
What makes you different from other similar businesses in the area?
I don’t think there any other similar businesses in the area! The fact that the monthly market offers Altrincham shoppers something different on a weekend has been crucial to its success.
What flexibility does being an independent business give you over a national chain / business?
It means we can see what works and respond to changes in our customer’s preferences quickly, as well as retaining a personal and local feel that nationals just can’t compete with.
What do you feel is the biggest challenge for small businesses at the moment?
In the current market? Simply surviving from one month to the next.
Looking back, which piece of advice would you give to somebody setting up their own business today?
Make sure you really research your market, don’t be afraid to deviate from your original plan at times… and similiarly stick to it doggedly at others! Don’t be put off by people saying what you’re doing won’t work, instead see it as an incentive to prove them wrong. And always treat both your suppliers and customers well as it creates a nice working environment…and you never know when you might need a favour!
What part does Social Media play in your business?
Social media plays a huge part in advertising the market and attracting new stallholders. @altvtgmarket now has over 4,000 followers on Twitter.
And getting to know you and your Altrincham…
If you had to sum up Altrincham in one line, what would it be?
A historic market town with some beautiful buildings and a lot of untapped potential.
Where do you eat / take out in Altrincham?
I like to eat in Pi and spent many a cold Twilight Market evening nipping in there to keep warm with a beer and a pie!
Which is your favourite pub or bar to drink at in Altrincham?
See above! I also like Mort and The Belgian Bar is welcoming and cosy.
Where is your essential must visit shop in Altrincham?
Traders Outlet – particularly No. 16 on the top floor as you never know what you’re going to find. I also enjoy trawling the town’s many quality charity shops for the same reason.
What’s been the most impressive new business you’ve seen open in Altrincham in the past 12 months
No. 16 The Downs… But then I guess I am biased! I love seeing new independent businesses – such as The Village Toy Company, Fab Patisserie and Beatnik Records – popping up in Altrincham and really hope they do well. I strongly believe quality independents are the way Altrincham needs to go in order to win back shoppers.
Which local towns do feel Altrincham could learn from and why?
Locally, I think the Treacle Market in Macclesfield is a real foodie haven – but ultimately I would like to see Altrincham becoming more like Frome in Somerset. This historical market town manages to perfectly balance the well-known national chains, cafes, restaurants and supermarkets you find in Altrincham with a wide variety of thriving bespoke independent shops as well as a vibrant market scene which attracts visitors from miles around… it can be done!
In an ideal world what major improvement would you like to see happen in Altrincham?
I would like to see the market opening every day – and some evenings – offering an amazing variety of top-quality locally-sourced food and drink, regular speciality markets and events, and becoming the hub of the town
And if we want to look you up on Social Media what’s your facebook / twitter addresses?
If you wish to be considered for a My Altrincham Feature simply email firstname.lastname@example.org
“With over 12 years experience of Social Media and 17 years experience of online marketing in other companies, clients come to myself when they want a veteran rather than a rookie” Alex McCann