THE SPOTLIGHT is being shone on businesswomen in Leamington town centre for International Women’s Day.
BID Leamington has identified more than 100 businesses in the town centre which are owned or managed by women, and are sharing some of their inspirational stories as part of this year’s global campaign to celebrate women’s achievements.
Paula Morton, who owns Geiko hair salon and Feel Free Hair Loss Solutions in Park Street, and Vickie Shears, who owns The Rustic Food Company in Regent Street, feature in a series of short films being produced by BID Leamington. Both Paula and Vickie have been recognised with major business awards.
Stephanie Kerr, executive director at BID Leamington, said: “There are a lot of talented and inspiring women running businesses in the town centre so we felt International Women’s Day was a great opportunity to showcase them.
“We have filmed interviews with women from a cross-section of businesses and hope that sharing their stories and advice will encourage others as well as recognising their own achievements.”
The footage, which can be viewed on BID Leamington’s social media platforms includes interviews with around ten women who head up a variety of businesses in the town centre.
Paula said: “I wanted to be involved in the films as it’s such a good opportunity not only to showcase businesswomen but also independent businesses in the town centre. There are some great independents out there and that’s where the strength comes from.
“I’ve been here 18 years and have had to adapt to changes but I’ve always kept to the mission statement I had from the beginning – and that’s my best advice in business. It reminds you who you are and what you set out to achieve whenever things get tough.”
Vickie said: “I think what BID Leamington is doing around International Women’s Day is so important as I don’t think women in business get enough recognition because in the main, they are often juggling several roles at work and home.
“Running my own business started later in my career because I didn’t feel I could make it a success alongside other commitments but I wish I had done it a lot sooner. I would urge others to just go for it as there is a lot of support among businesswomen. Long gone are the days when women don’t fix each other’s crowns.”
Alongside the films, a competition is also being run by BID Leamington on social media in the run-up to Mother’s Day with prizes including shopping and meal vouchers for outlets in the town centre.
Stephanie said: “We’re asking people to tell us their most memorable Mother’s Day experience or alternatively, to name the flower that their mum would be and why, and the winners will be able to treat their mums or themselves with a voucher in time for Sunday March 31.”
The Mother’s Day competition runs from March 15 to 25, and can be entered via @RoyalLeamingtonTownCentre on Facebook and @leamingtonguide on Twitter.