Let’s address the big elephant in the room before we go any further here. Yes, COVID-19 has made the past month or so a really scary time for all of us. I appreciate how difficult it is, whether you’re learning to work from home with kids around, struggling to keep your mental health in check, or adapting to furlough life. I feel the anxiety as well, especially when it comes to visiting my local shops.
I’m sure many of you have the same fears as I do when it comes to shopping, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get an online delivery slot these days. With that in mind, I’ve found a few ways to minimise my trips to the supermarket, whilst also supporting some amazing local businesses. Of course, this post is only really going to be relevant if you live in the North East, but I hope it can ease some of your stresses, whilst also helping out a small business that needs it more than ever.
First, and in my opinion an important one, is coffee. I never thought of myself as a coffee addict until the pandemic hit. I miss my trips to my local indie coffee shop but I have a few options for you here.
If you live locally to Jesmond, then why not pop by Cafe 1901 on your daily allocated stroll. They have freshly brewed takeaway coffee to fuel that caffeine hit. And what’s even better, they’re now selling a lot of local produce including meats, veg and bread! If walking by isn’t an option, then you can also make an online order via their website – which also includes some meals from their regular menu! We ordered breakfast delivery over the weekend and it was just as delicious as normal.
If you’re more into brewing your own cuppa joe, then why not order some ground, or bean coffee to your house. My favourites are Ouseburn Coffee, Pink Lane and Laneway & Co. All are offering regular delivery slots throughout the week, meaning you can still get that delicious coffee fix in the comfort of your own home.
While this one isn’t an immediate fix, it’s nice to treat your future self while you can. A great idea for yourself, or as a gift, is to buy a giftcard from your local coffee shop. All of the above are offering these options, but my absolute favourite is Hatch coffee. A one man show that will not disappoint – I can’t wait to get a Hatch fix when this all blows over.
A big one that I’m sure we’re all struggling with is regular access to fruit, veg and bread (or even flour). These a probably my most regular essentials that need topping up, and to be honest a trip to my local Waitrose last week resulted in me crying my way back home. So I’ve found a few options here to provide local sourced produce straight to my door.
A favourite for every geordie, is of course Grainger Market. The great news is, you can still get your fix here with them offering local delivery of meat, fruit, veg, bakery items and even sweats! I made an order last week, which came the same day, and provided me with enough veg and bread for two weeks. My advice is to get on their website first thing as the slots fill up pretty quickly. Unfortunately they are only delivery to certain postcodes, so make sure you check this first.
Not one I’ve tried personally, but a friend recommended Laidlers to me the other week. Again, they offer fresh fruit, veg and dairy items to keep your every day essentials topped up. The order my friend got looked amazing, and came within a few days of her ordering. So another brilliant option if you’re in the North East.
Again, I want to give a little shout out to 1901 – not an ad I promise, but they are one of my favourite local businesses. They now offer some produce, flour and bakery items on their website. So if you can hop onto their website, you can get a delivery pretty easily and safe yourself any bother.
I know this probably isn’t an exhaustive list to all the brilliant local companies that you can support, but I wanted to mention a few that I’ve been supporting through the last few weeks. I know it can be difficult for a lot of people right now to buy local, but where possible it’s always nice to lend a helping hand. If you’re looking for more ways to support local, then I highly recommend reading A Slice of the Toon’s post on how you can support local.
If you have any other local companies you’re supporting then please let me know. And if you’re not from the North East, then maybe this will have inspired you to have a little look around your local area for some businesses to support.
While you’re here, why not have a read of my post 5 Favourite Things You’ll Love Too, you might find a new favourite for during this crazy time.