IN A bid to increase footfall in their town, a business is trying to introduce celebration totem poles to the main shopping street.
Shane Davies opened his art and craft making business, The Crafty Makery, on West Street in Fareham last month and wants to help encourage other small businesses open up.
Shane said: ‘To me Fareham has always been a place that celebrates, encourages and motivates its residents and until the birth of the internet had a thriving town centre with a multitude of shops.
‘I find myself asking what happened to all those small independent trades and why do we have so many coffee shops.’
Shane is now planning to create a sculpture park in West Street near the independent shops which he hopes would be sponsored by local businesses and designed by groups including the Brownies and the WI.
He said: ‘Each Pole will have an NFC (near field communication) tag implanted into its side to allow visitors to the sculpture park an opportunity to use mobile technology to find out about each pole who sponsored it, who created it and what that pole represents to those who crafted it and any message they would like to share through the pole being part of the larger installation.
‘I would also hope that in time that we would be able to encourage the community to allow us to install more poles throughout the town enabling visitors to explore the poles as part of a trail encouraging people to use bicycle, or to jog, run or walk the trail.’
Shane has entered a proposal to Fareham Borough Council.
Ward councillor Pam Bryant was supportive of increasing footfall in the town.
She said: ‘This shop is just what the community needs and a space that can be used by lots of different groups.
‘We have been trying to increase footfall for many years and I think this shop will definitely help that as people will come down to this end of the street for it and then hopefully they would then visit the other shops and the cafes and restaurants.’
Councillor Katrina Trott added: ‘We need something to encourage more people to this part of town and I think this is a great idea.’