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Perfect present: West End shops launch gift card…with £1,000 worth to give away

By Ian Marland at

The West End has its very own gift card in time for Christmas – and businesses involved are giving away 20 cards worth £50 each as a special festive treat.

Fifty seven West End businesses are collaborating to encourage Glasgow to shop locally.

The venture is led by Byres Road and Lanes Business Improvement District (BID) – the organisation behind the Visit West End campaign.

Prized:  Pioneering Glasgow Gift Card Launched To Encourage ëShop Localí Ethos in West End. Picture Robert Perry

Prized: Pioneering Glasgow gift card launched to encourage people to shop in the West End.
Picture Robert Perry

The new gift card – launched by West End shopper Jackson McCusker aged four – seeks to give a boost to the area.

The idea was inspired by the success of schemes in Perth and Kendal in Cumbria.

Consumers will be allowed to use the gift card in their favourite shops, bars, restaurants and services found on Byres Road.

David Howat, BID chair:

“This is a really simple solution, one that’s easy for the person buying the card, and easy for the business that’s taking it.

“It’s flexible – you choose the value you put on the card, anything from £10 to £500, and the recipient can spend it any of the network of shops, restaurants, bars and cafes where it’s accepted.”

Like any other gift card shoppers can spend the balance in different outlets that are part of the scheme.

With fifty seven retailers, restaurants, independents and services signed up, the card allows plenty of choice for people who are hard to buy for.

The cards themselves can be purchased online via www.visitwestendcard.com or in person Monday to Sunday in Papyrus (374 Byres Road) and Tuesday to Sunday in By Distinction Art (100 Byres Road).

Young:  Pioneering Glasgow Gift Card Launched To Encourage ëShop Localí Ethos in West End. Looking for the best Christmas gift? Go West and invest in local shops. Fifty seven West End businesses are collaborating to encourage Glasgow to shop local with the launch of a new gift card today launched by West End shopper, Jackson McCusker age 4 (Wednesday, 7 December).

All smiles: West End shopper, Jackson McCusker age 4 helped launch the gift card. Picture: Robert Perry.

The card was designed by Glasgow creative agency Sevenfive Creative and produced by Miconex to allow Byres Road & Lanes businesses the opportunity to offer a unique value proposition.

David Howat, chair of the BID, says: “Byres Road & Lanes BID were keen to offer a gift card to promote our local businesses and encourage people to spend money with them.

“This is a really simple solution, one that’s easy for the person buying the card, and easy for the business that’s taking it.

“It’s flexible – you choose the value you put on the card, anything from £10 to £500, and the recipient can spend it any of the network of shops, restaurants, bars and cafes where it’s accepted.

“We have had an enthusiastic take – up from businesses, who see the benefits of this promotion of the area.”

Local retailer Bruce Finnie from By Distinction Art said: “I’m really pleased that the gallery will be an outlet for the gift card.

“It’s such a great idea, keeping business local to the West End and showcasing the wide variety of shops, restaurants, cafes and bars where it can be spent.

“It’s the perfect gift, obviously for Christmas but also for any time of the year.”

* To celebrate the launch, Visit West End is giving away twenty £50 gift cards as an early Christmas treat. For your chance to win, simply head to http://visitwestendcard.com/competition/ and enter your name and email address before 9am on Monday, 19 December.

* Featured photograph courtesy of Robert Perry.