Posted: 18/05/2020

Independent Retailers Confederation creates ‘We are open’ map to promote small shops

Independent Retailers Confederation we are open

The Independent Retailers Confederation (IRC), a group of trade organisations representing different small retailers across the UK, has launched an online map and directory of independent shops that are still open or operating during the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Retailers who sign up for a listing on the ‘We are open’ scheme will be highlighted in a directory and on an interactive map, that also highlights opening hours or alternative trading conditions like “online/delivery only”.

Any UK independent retailer can confirm their opening status now, free of charge, at

Business owners can also include offers available specifically for key workers, as part of their listing.

All consumer have to do is enter their postcode on the webpage to see the confirmed open independent retailers in their area. They can also search by sector, business type or by retail-specific filter options.

“From the feedback the IRC received from independent retailers across multiple sectors, as well as from the general public through our consumer-facing site Indie Retail, it became apparent that a platform such as ‘We are open’ was essential,” said Mark Walmsley, Chairman of the Independent Retailers Confederation.

“The public still needs the products, services and knowledge that independent retailers provide and the ‘We are open’ directory helps them to quickly locate those shops that are open for business. This directory will help bridge the gap between customers looking for open shops in a certain location, from a specific sector or selling a particular brand, and the retailers that remain open in some way to serve the public.”

The Independent Retailers Confederation (IRC) is a collection of organisations that represent the best interests of around 100,000 independent retailers across the UK. Members of the IRC include the Association of Cycle Traders, Booksellers Association and FFD’s publisher the Guild of Fine Food.

Consumers wishing to look for retailers in their area should go online to

Visit the Guild of Fine Food’s COVID-19 support page for more help with trading through the pandemic.

Read more industry news and views in the latest edition of Fine Food Digest – read online here.

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