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Welcome to the Knowledge Hub

Knowledge is power. And that’s why we help our members stay ahead with all the latest sector information and insights. You’ll find articles, research, factsheets, legal documents and opinion pieces, all right here in the hub.

Blog Post

Make the most of your bira website

In just a few clicks you can save time and money, as well source solutions to lots of common retail problems affecting independent retailers.

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Disability Confidence can benefit your business

There are over 7m working-age people in the UK who have a disability or health condition, representing a vast and varied pool of talent that retailers could tap into.

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Four ways to compete with Amazon

With the right people, marketing strategies and products, you’ll find that going up against ecommerce stores like Amazon is entirely doable.

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Retailer’s Guide – Handling redundancies

Redundancies should be handled with care and legal advice should be obtained to minimise the risk of unfair claims.

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#WDYT boosts indie’s sales

The #WDYT campaign Maybe* arrived at exactly the right time for bira member Keith Scarrott Shoes, an independent in Cheltenham.

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Success in store at Barkers

Explore a stunning example of confident specialist retailing with Barkers department store and Barkes Home in Northallerton, North Yorkshire.

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Dilapidations – the hidden lease clause

Don’t get caught out with the bills for updating your property at the end of the lease, warns ex-bira president Gary Gordon.

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David Neill Mica embraces the world of ecommerce

As it approaches its 30th anniversary this summer, new bira member David Neill Mica has embraced the world of ecommerce with a transactional website.

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After 33 years with bira CEO, Alan Hawkins is heading for retirement

After 33 years with bira and its various predecessors, including 12 years as a CEO, Alan Hawkins is heading for retirement in September.

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Retail crime rising

The ongoing rise in shop theft and assaults against retail staff has been highlighted by official figures for the past year.

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Global event gathers hardware and DIY industry

The Internation Federation of Hardware and Housewares Association (IHA) met in Barcelona on 10-11 June, immediately followed by the sixth Global DIY Summit of which it is now part.

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Train your team to new heights

Too many big retailers are dominating the news reports with the wrong sort of headlines. bira CEO Alan Hawkins says tough times merit investment in people.

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Blog Post

The changing face of retail

To say the retail industry has a significant impact on the UK economy would be somewhat of an understatement. It is important that we recognise that the sector is changing and, as a result, those who work within it must do so too.

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Blog Post

A Green Future: Reducing plastic waste with the 25 Year Environment Plan

As the UK works towards Brexit, fishing and agricultural policy will be reformed and the Government want to use this opportunity to improve how we care for our land, rivers and seas and to deliver a Green Brexit for the UK.

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ArticleBlog Post

Hot weather in the workplace – A Health & Safety perspective

Does the current heatwave give you cause for concern about the temperature in your workplace? Here’s how to keep your employees safe in the workplace.

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5 In-Store Ideas to Drive Traffic and Sales

With the convenience of online shopping, getting people into your physical store can seem like an increasingly difficult task. But we’re here with good news…

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In fine style with Trotter & Deane

There’s only one premium menswear brand sold at Trotter & Deane – its own brand.

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Member magazine – July/August 2018

John Deane-Bowers has made his Trotter & Deane own-label into a sophisticated success

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Blog Post

Shrewsbury Passport for Independents

bira are proud to support the Shrewsbury Passport for Independents to showcase the abundance of independent businesses that Shrewsbury has to offer.

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Hanover Healthfoods in Edinburgh has been trading since 1904. Is it the UK’s oldest?

Hanover Healthfoods in Edinburgh has been trading since 1904. We caught up with owner John Mckee who loved working there so much he bought the business.

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Vary your methods to improve the team

Francesca Nicasio, content marketing manager for retail POS software expert Vend, looks at effective ideas to train staff.

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Up to 25% of a retailer’s electricity costs come from lighting

Lighting is one of the biggest electrical costs to any shop. As well as improving your green credentials, overhauling your lights could save you money.

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Retired member gives back to her community

81 year old Joy Baker, having retired from J & J Baker Antiques in Lavenham, Suffolk, (which was in membership for 15 years), has turned her attention to art.

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Blog Post

Why The High Street Will Win

Today the world is awash with stories about struggles in retail. However, that may not be the case as we could be on the cusp on a revolution. Find out why.

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Blog Post

Fun ways to get you & your business involved in the Independents’ Day celebrations this July

Though we support independent retailers all year long, we love a reason to celebrate and Independents’ Day on Wednesday 4th July is the perfect excuse.

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Weather has an enormous, and growing, effect on footfall and sales

In a world where weather has an increasingly influential role to play in how people shop, and where seasons are so difficult to predict, how should fashion retailers respond?

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ArticleBlog Post

Health of the High Street Survey

We’re running an important nationwide project to update the data we have for the overall health of our high streets. Please complete the short six question survey below and distribute to as many of your customers as you can.

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Blog Post

How to use retail analytics to delight customers and increase sales

Being data-centric in retail is more important than ever. Here’s how to use retail analytics and hard data to make smarter decisions toward higher profits

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Meet three new recruits who represent the amazing variety of the bira membership

Our retailers are a varied and interesting community. Here we meet three new recruits: The Highland Bookshop, Tivi Ale and Velvet Exclusive Ladieswear.

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Blog Post

The great hedge: How to manage margins in a fluctuating currency market

If football is a game of two halves, then business – particularly retail business – is a game of two margins: planned and actual.

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Blog Post

Dismissing an employee for gross misconduct

bira legal looks into the issue of gross misconduct and answers commonly asked questions from retailers regarding justifiable employee dismissal.

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Blog Post

The pressured consumer – How can retailers ease the squeeze?

Pressures on wages, inflation driven by a weak pound, and overall economic uncertainty have threatened to slay the beast formally known as the UK consumer.

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Retailers get social

Topping the list of factors positively affecting business for cookshop and housewares retailers in 2017 was promotional activity, with 61% of respondents putting social media as a top priority.

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Sorbon Estates partnership supports independent tenants

Beaconsfield-based commercial property owner Sorbon Estates has so far paid for a year’s membership of bira for eight independent retail tenants across the south of England and is in talks with others.

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Our suppliers truly deliver

CEO Alan Hawkins tips his hat to bira’s vital partners and providers

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Blog Post

Feeling the heat at work

As summer approaches, a mini heat wave has come along and made us all hot under the collar. It is best for employers to be prepared and know what to do if and when the temperature ramps up.

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Exclusive offers at Exclusively events

There’s not long left to book your place at this year’s Exclusively Housewares and Exclusively Electrical exhibitions. On 12-13 June suppliers will showcase new products, Christmas collections and preview spring/summer launches at the Business Design Centre, Islington, London.

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Health store sales up, DIY sales down in Q1

Sales of shovels and sledges may well have been high during Q1, but these weren’t enough to pick up sales for the sector. Hard-ware and DIY saw a -2.86% lower performance against the same quarter last year.

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Carolyn Stennett of Chica Shoes has made a success out of doing things her own way

“The core clientele I had built up at Chica Shoes during four years followed me and it was an instant success.”

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Member magazine – June 2018

In Bury St Edmunds, Caroyl Stennett of Chica Shoes keeps things nice and simple.

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Suzanne Temple tells us what’s next for Blue and The Loft

Suzanne Temple tells us what it’s like to own a premium women’s fashion store in Cheltenham and an eclectic lifestyle business in a former department store in Bath.

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Making the most of the seasons with Bijouled

Georgina Collins from jewellery and accessories retailer Bijouled in Yorkshire says using the seasons, trying new things and having a critical eye is the key to grabbing attention with windows throughout the year.

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Giving back is good for business

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) for retailers: find out why giving back doesn’t just make the world a better place, it’s good for business.

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Blog Post

Independents’ Day UK

bira is proud to support Independents’ Day UK: a not-for-profit campaign that exists to support and promote independent retail businesses across the UK all year round.

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Fond goodbyes, with discounts

When the retailing sands ran out for Indie-Anna, posting the Closing Down Sale signs became inevitable. They proved to be quite a magnet for customers.

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Punish criminals, not cook shops

View the latest letter to the editor from a concerned independent retailer, who says that Goverment needs to think about recent proposal for tackling crime.

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Blog Post

How to improve your store’s conversion rate

If you’re seeing low conversion rates in your store, fret not. There are several action steps you can take to increase your conversions.

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Living the good life in Fife

With a frontage more than 100 yards long, 13 departments and a busy café, Rejects Department Store in Kirkcaldy is a dominant retailing force in Fife.

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Attempt to license Scottish pet shops

Pet Shops in Scotland may be subject to tighter controls if a proposed Member’s Bill wins support.

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Closures continue as market restructures

The ongoing reshaping of the UK retail scene is clear from a new report that shows the number of independent shops decreased by 1,483 units in 2017, a significant change from the net increase of 795 shops in 2016.

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ArticleBlog Post

Hot weather in the workplace – A Health & Safety perspective

Does the current heatwave give you cause for concern about the temperature in your workplace? Here’s how to keep your employees safe in the workplace.

More
ArticleBlog Post

Health of the High Street Survey

We’re running an important nationwide project to update the data we have for the overall health of our high streets. Please complete the short six question survey below and distribute to as many of your customers as you can.

More
ArticleBlog Post

National Home Improvement Week

‘Love the Home You Live In’ is the tagline for National Home Improvement Week, a new consumer marketing initiative to be held during 12-18 March.

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Blog Post

Make the most of your bira website

In just a few clicks you can save time and money, as well source solutions to lots of common retail problems affecting independent retailers.

More
Blog Post

Retailer’s Guide – Handling redundancies

Redundancies should be handled with care and legal advice should be obtained to minimise the risk of unfair claims.

More
Blog Post

The changing face of retail

To say the retail industry has a significant impact on the UK economy would be somewhat of an understatement. It is important that we recognise that the sector is changing and, as a result, those who work within it must do so too.

More
Blog Post

A Green Future: Reducing plastic waste with the 25 Year Environment Plan

As the UK works towards Brexit, fishing and agricultural policy will be reformed and the Government want to use this opportunity to improve how we care for our land, rivers and seas and to deliver a Green Brexit for the UK.

More
ArticleBlog Post

Hot weather in the workplace – A Health & Safety perspective

Does the current heatwave give you cause for concern about the temperature in your workplace? Here’s how to keep your employees safe in the workplace.

More
Blog Post

Shrewsbury Passport for Independents

bira are proud to support the Shrewsbury Passport for Independents to showcase the abundance of independent businesses that Shrewsbury has to offer.

More
Blog Post

Why The High Street Will Win

Today the world is awash with stories about struggles in retail. However, that may not be the case as we could be on the cusp on a revolution. Find out why.

More
Blog Post

Fun ways to get you & your business involved in the Independents’ Day celebrations this July

Though we support independent retailers all year long, we love a reason to celebrate and Independents’ Day on Wednesday 4th July is the perfect excuse.

More
ArticleBlog Post

Health of the High Street Survey

We’re running an important nationwide project to update the data we have for the overall health of our high streets. Please complete the short six question survey below and distribute to as many of your customers as you can.

More
Blog Post

The great hedge: How to manage margins in a fluctuating currency market

If football is a game of two halves, then business – particularly retail business – is a game of two margins: planned and actual.

More
Fact Sheet

Home Office Serious Violence Strategy

The Home Office will today (Monday 9 April) launch the Serious Violence Strategy, which will set out the Government’s response to the recent increase in knife crime, gun crime and homicide.

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Fact Sheet

Cyber Aware’s new Perception Gap Report

This innovative new report evidences the misconceptions the public have towards cyber security, compared to the reality of the threat – a perceptions gap which is eroding our resilience to cyber criminals.

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Fact Sheet

Withdrawing the paper £10 note – FAQ’s

The last day to use your paper £10 notes is 1 March 2018. The Bank of England answers your frequently asked questions regarding the withdrawal in this factsheet.

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Fact Sheet

Navigating the financial landscape

Financial planning responds to seasonal changes. Wren Sterling offers insight on how to navigate the financial landscape.

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Fact Sheet

SMEs and Cyber Attacks: What you need to know

Only 1 in 4 small businesses are prepared for a cyber attack. Prevent your business from being hindered by a cyber attack by managing business risks. Source: Towergate Insurance

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Fact Sheet

The definitive guide to mobile marketing and alerts

We are increasingly becoming a mobile-first society. Here, Text Local brings to you the definitive guide to mobile marketing for your business.

Download
Fact Sheet

Your guide to the General Data Protection Regulation

The way in which personal data is used and protected is set to change in May 2018.

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Fact Sheet

Business Rates Manifesto – March 2017

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Fact Sheet

Your guide to selling and using chemical products

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Fact Sheet

Your guide to carrying cash

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Video

Northumbria Pets

Northumbria Pets first came across bira in 2006 at a trade show event and has been a member ever since, taking advantage of bira direct’s pre-negotiated terms and discounts with suppliers.

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Video

Advance Performance

Sam Hale of Advance Performance discusses her business journey which started 18 years ago from a back bedroom at home. The ‘running store for everyone’ is now based in both Peterborough and Cambridge and prides itself on offering a high customer service which cannot be delivered by an online-only retail store.

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Blog PostVideo

A recipe for bags load of energy

Ever wondered how you could get bags load of energy? National Association of Health Stores (NAHS) explains how to make the most from items you can find at your local independent Health Store.

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Video

How to login to the Member Dashboard

A step-by-step guide on how to login to the Member Dashboard, available to bira members. Unlock member-only service information, resources, bira member magazines and exclusive content today.

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Video

How to use bira direct Invoice Manager

It’s now easier to keep all of your invoices in one place. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to us bira direct Invoice Manager, available to all bira members.

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Video

Your guide to updating your supplier page

A step-by-step video tutorial on how to edit your bira direct supplier page.

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Video

Toolshop

Member testimonial

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Video

Glasswells

Member testimonial

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Rachel Riley

Member testimonial

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Lords

Member testimonial

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The bira member magazine is created with our members in mind and is exclusively available both as hard copies and online to our members. Our membership magazine demonstrates real membership value and is a means for sourcing advice, support, savings and services. It signposts members towards exciting events and exhibitions, and new products and suppliers. And it ensures our members are well-informed on the latest matters of legislation and compliance affecting their business.
The BAGMA Bulletin is created with our members in mind and is exclusively available both as hard copies and online to our members. Our membership magazine demonstrates real membership value and is a means for sourcing advice, support, savings and services. It signposts members towards exciting events and exhibitions, and new products and suppliers. And it ensures our members are well-informed on the latest matters of legislation and compliance affecting their business.
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