BUSINESS owners in Craig-y-Don are seeing a boost in trade on the back of staying open later than usual on Thursday evenings in the run-up to Christmas.
Since November 17, and until December 22, more than 10 businesses based in the Llandudno suburb are not closing their doors for the evening until 8pm.
• Coffee V.
• Ballooning Marvellous.
• The Quilting Bee.
• Salon 81.
• Salon Twenty Two.
• Feet First.
• Givealittle Gift Shop.
• Darcey’s Interiors.
• Casa Reme Delicatessen.
• The Ascot Tapproom.
Special Thursday night events have included sewing workshops at The Quilting Bee, cheese-tasting at Casa Reme Delicatessen, and as of last night (December 1), visits from Father Christmas at Coffee V.
For £5 per child at Coffee V, children can explain to him whether they’re on the naughty or nice list this Christmas.
Sam Price, of Darcey’s Interiors, spearheaded the idea for the businesses to stay open late on Thursdays.
She and other business owners have spoken of its success in its first three weeks, at such a crucial time for small enterprises, not only with Christmas looming but also amid the cost of living crisis.
Sam said: “We have found the late night shopping to be a great success so far. As the weeks are going on, it’s becoming busier, which is great.
“We are trying to be as flexible as possible with our opening hours in the run-up to Christmas.
“We know people are busy with work and other commitments, so evening shopping offers them more opportunities to do their Christmas shopping locally.
“The parking situation is also easier in the evening, which is proving more convenient for people.
“We have a fantastic community spirit in Craig-y-Don. Businesses have really pulled together to offer this late night shopping and we have received some brilliant feedback as a result.
“If it continues to be popular, we will look to continue the tradition next year, too, where perhaps more businesses will join in.”
Ros Wynne-Ellis, of Salon 81, added: “It’s hard for us at Salon 81 to say how much of a difference it’s made, as we are often open late on a Thursday.
“But it’s been lovely to see the shop windows all lit up at night, making the street look warm and inviting.
“We love working in Craig-y-Don, and it’s great to be able to share this fantastic little community with the wider area over the festive period.”
Remedios “Reme” Aldana Lopez, of Casa Reme Delicatessen, said: “Last Thursday evening (November 24) was better than yesterday evening; more people came in for the cheese-tasting last week, even though the weather was terrible.
“But I have to say, people still came to see what I have (last night), and asked about hampers, so I think they were looking for Christmas ideas.
“In general, the last week has been better, because I can see people have been buying things for Christmas. At the moment, I feel a little bit happier.
“I think it’s an amazing community. When we are all open and you see people around, it’s very lively and pretty. People who have come in the evening have all made really nice comments.”
Alix Donaldson, from Givealittle, added: “Anything to promote Craig-y-Don helps.
“We are all trying to work together, so hopefully the benefits will be seen.
“It is a tricky time for all involved, with people being more selective and considered about purchases with the cost of living and post-COVID effect.
“Christmas trade is important, as it carries us through the cold quiet winter months before the tourists arrive.”
The aforementioned Craig-y-Don business will continue staying open until 8pm every Thursday until Christmas (December 8, 15 and 22).