The owner of Ruddington Village Butchers has revealed that, unless trade picks up dramatically again very soon, he will be forced to close his business within the next two weeks.
Shane Ginty says that his shop has run at a loss of £2,500 over the past few months – and that no small business can sustain those kind of losses. On a Facebook post he wrote: “We would like to say a big thank you to all the lovely people who have supported the shop over the years. Unfortunately there are not enough of you.”
The sad news comes just less than a year after RUDDINGTON.info reported that our butcher needed “a miracle” to avoid closure – and we urged Ruddingtonians to rethink their usual shopping habits to support this vital and unique independent trader – our last remaining butcher in Ruddington. On that occasion, a miraculous turnaround did happen as shocked villagers flocked to Shane’s shop to prevent him from going under. After seeing his selection of quality meats, multi-flavoured handmade sausages, burgers, bacon, ham, cheeses, pies, condiments, free range eggs, and more, many new customers did then stick with him for their regular shop through Christmas before things went quiet again in the new year “…people drifting back into their old shopping habits, perhaps?” ponders Shane.
Initiatives such as Ruddington Village Centre Partnership’s ‘Loyalty Card’ Scheme and new monthly Ruddington Village Market have been introduced to try to increase footfall to our village centre: “These did help initially” says Shane “but I’ve found in the last three or four months that I’m preaching to the converted with the Loyalty Card – with only the people who were coming into the shop anyway using it. The first couple of markets were very successful for me, but it did mean a lot of extra hours – and employing somebody else to do the stall – which means you have to take a lot of money to warrant doing that. When it came to April’s market I only just broke even – because it seemed to have lost its appeal a bit – so I decided if I continued there through the summer I’d probably lose money.”
Shane’s reluctant withdrawal from the market had unexpected repercussions – with organisers deciding to bring in another butcher from outside the village to run a stall instead: “It is really competing with something that’s already here” worries Shane. “What he’s selling isn’t really going to be any better than what I’ve got, so I don’t really think you need another butcher at the market, to be honest with you?!”
The usually cheery Shane says his financial situation has now become critical again – and his financial woes have been giving him many sleepless nights recently: “One more week of losing money like this and I think I could be out of business.”
He has this message for villagers who’ve fallen out of the habit of shopping locally: “Please come in! You’ll see the difference in quality with what you can get in the supermarkets straight away. Also please do support all the other good shops in Ruddington as well – because, for some reason, the amount of people out and about shopping in the village seems to have diminished a lot in recent months…”
Ruddington is certainly NOT short of potential customers. We have over SEVEN THOUSAND residents and THOUSANDS more visiting daily to work in or around our village centre. Even if only a small fraction of us can make that tiny extra effort to shop locally at our village butchers and elsewhere it could be enough to tip the balance. Once you’ve got into the habit we’re certain you’ll want to keep going back for more…
The message is clear for Shane’s shop and others traders in Ruddington: Use it – or lose it!