AFTER an exceptionally challenging year for local businesses, Ilkley BID has engaged the help of Christmas elves to bring some much-needed cheer to the town and encourage residents to shop local this year.
As part of the ‘Discover Ilkley at Christmas’ campaign local businesses are participating in an interactive ‘Elf Trail’ and are taking part in a Festive Window Display competition.
Even if the premises are closed at the time, participants can spot the Elves hiding in business windows around the town using the free LoyalFree App, and they can also vote for their favourite shop window. There are many prizes to be won, plus Ilkley BID is rewarding the winner of the best Festive Window Display too.
To bring further festive cheer a number of vacant shops will have their windows professionally decorated with winter wonderland themes. Shops will be encouraged to open on Sundays on December 6th, 13th and 20th to allow more opportunities for Christmas shopping, and there will be some Christmas music playing in town too.
Real life Elves will be popping up in videos on Social Media to promote festive tips and offer gift ideas from a wide range of Ilkley businesses.
Click and collect, online services and takeaways will also be promoted until lockdown restrictions are lifted.
An ‘Elfie Selfie’ station is being created where visitors can take a photograph against a fun festive background.
Ilkley Bid Manager Helen Rhodes said: “The uncertainty around changing Covid measures, and concerns about the virus mean that many more people will be keen to stay local and shop local this winter.
“With opportunities for travel and socialising limited during this challenging time, creating some festive buzz, family fun and highlighting the fabulous businesses in Ilkley in a Covid safe way should bring some welcome festive cheer.”