Crowdfunding pays for Covered Market indie store

Independent businesses in Oxford have been given a new opportunity to trade in the city centre following a successful crowdfunding campaign. Rosie Jacobs and Anna Munday started Independent Oxford in 2016 with the aim of bringing businesses together to build a community of independent traders. Following a successful pop-up shop at the Covered Market in December the new Indie Oxford Market Place opened yesterday at the Covered Market.

READ AGAIN: Independent traders’ project will be run in Covered Market It features goods sold by 20 innovative businesses from across Oxfordshire and will remain open for four months, thanks to GBP5,200 donated to a crowdfunding campaign.

The money will help to pay the wages of shop manager Claire LeMaster and give tenants rent discounts. Ms Jacobs said: “We are delighted the crowdfunding was so well supported. “We have had lots of customers in already and people have been buying a whole variety of things.

“This shop used to be Maximilian shoe shop before it closed and then it was an embroidery shop. “We will also host workshops and talks.

“Businesses trading rent space from us – that helps to cover out costs.” READ AGAIN: Travellers arrive at Great Western Park in Didcot Businesses taking part include Truck Store record shop in Cowley Road, the Oxford branch of online jewellery seller Etsy, Fairtrade at St Michael’s and Cranston Pickles.

Crowdfunding pays for Covered Market indie store Co-founder of Independent Oxford Ms Munday said: “The Indie Oxford Market Place will offer much needed affordable retail space and it will act as an incubator space for 20 independent businesses from across the county, providing business support and community. “Customers can discover a whole range of awesome local independent businesses.

READ MORE: Latest on plan to open Home Bargains in Oxford “The market place is also breathing new life into an empty unit in the much-loved Covered Market.” Crowdfunding pays for Covered Market indie store

Other businesses trading from the unit include Warborough Honey, Littlemore Candle Company, Emily Marston Ceramics, and Jericho Design House. Among the first customers were Asami Shiohara, 24, and Miso Kamijo, 23, from Tokyo, Japan. Ms Kamijo said: “I like this shop – it’s very cute – I bought a wooden postcard of Oxford for GBP5 – it’s a present.”

Christina O’Hare, who runs Oxford Etsy, said about 10 sellers with the brand were displaying their items for sale. Crowdfunding pays for Covered Market indie store Etsy’s arrival in a shop in Oxford follows pop-up ventures in Abingdon and Didcot.

Miss O’Hare said: “Some of our traders had never sold in Oxford before so it’s good opportunity for them – the rents affordable and they are getting good exposure in the city centre.” It took about a month to reach and surpass the crowdfunding target of GBP5,000. Crowdfunding pays for Covered Market indie store

Rewards for supporters included a two-hour interior design session with Oxford-based ByEmmaJaneInteriors.

Others included two friends’ memberships for Modern Art Oxford, worth GBP50, and an GBP80 voucher to be used at Iffley Road’s Magdalen Arms pub.

The Covered Market is owned and run by the city council, which has backed the redesign of empty units to attract new tenants.

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