Electric cars, loyalty cards and tourist perks could hold the key to boosting trade in a north-east town.

Residents and traders of Ellon spent months considering how to help firms in the area thrive and the ideas have now been published.

Ellon Community Council, which is helping promote the trade improvement project, said one idea is to introduce an Ellon Card.

“The idea would be to persuade people to get the card and use it to get discounts or prizes,” said community council committee member Mike Jennings

He added: “We would hope it would encourage people to think about shopping local and supporting independent retailers.

“However, this needs support from retailers and services providers. The feedback we have had so far from traders has been positive, but it is still early days.”

Another idea is to install electric vehicle charging bays near shops.

A charging point in Ellon

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Mr Jennings said: “Drivers of electric vehicles plan their routes around the availability of charging stations so this would enhance the offering in Ellon to encourage electric vehicle owners to visit Ellon as a destination of choice.

“If fast-charging points were installed, a driver would know their vehicle would be fully charged in 45 minutes and would be happy to walk around the town centre in the meantime, contributing to local businesses.”

Another idea seeks to draw passing tourists with designated parking bays for overnight stays in several locations around the town.

The next step will be for Aberdeenshire Council to appoint an officer to lead the project.

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Mr Jennings said: “Once the council comes back to us, we will be looking for members of the community to come on board with the project team and take the plan forward.

“The team will consist of Aberdeenshire Council officers, community councillors and members of the community including representatives of Ellon Traders Association and, hopefully, key community members and business owners.”

Email mike.jennings@elloncc.org.uk to express your interest in helping with the project.



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