Between the 8th and 10th of April a large group of Cumbrian Food and Drink Businesses are going down to the Farm Shop & Deli Show at the NEC. They are going down as individual businesses but are locating in one large ‘This is Cumbria’ pavilion.
This is Cumbria started as an idea at last years show from two businesses Ginger Bakers and Hawkshead Relish. They both wanted to make more noise about the great businesses based in Cumbria so as you do, they booked a huge block right next door to the main stage for next year.
A few days later Maria from Hawkshead Relish rang us (Thomas Jardine & Co) and Sue from the Family Business Network to see if we could help fill, name, promote and develop the space. The answer was of course yes. The name ‘This is Cumbria’ came up as the collective name for the stand and We are Eclectic stepped up to do the design work for the show. As we write, Printing Plus have stepped up to do our printing.
The plan is to make ‘This is Cumbria’ a regular of the Farm Shop and Deli Show and to achieve this we decided to create a showcase area to allow businesses new to large trade stands an opportunity to test the water in a friendly environment surrounded by businesses who are more experienced with these types of shows. Two key sponsors Cartmell Shepherd and Enterprise Answers both stepped forward and financially supported areas for these businesses (Cartmell Shepherd the showcase area and Enterprise Answers the enterprise zone).
The businesses have now grown to 6 stand holders: Hawkshead Relish, Ginger Bakers, Kin Vodka, Tray Bakes, Kendal Mint Liqueur and Farrers and 6 show case businesses: Shed1 Gin, The Pie Mill, ML3 Technical, Lakeland Artisan, The Toffee Shop and Molly Rose Drinks. At time of writing we still have one 2*2 space left so please shout if you fancy joining us.
The activity around the show is now growing, Maria has given a brilliant masterclass at the NWBH show on getting the most of a trade show to our show case businesses. We are also holding a drinks reception on the 9th with Nigel Barden and various Cumbrian Chefs will give ‘This is Cumbria’ a shout from the main stage.
Help is coming form all sorts of other places, 32West have helped with press releases, Freya from WRBM has answered all our queries, BBC Radio Cumbria have talked to us about the progress of the show and loads of tweeters are helping spread the word. This is Cumbria is happening because businesses want it to happen, it’s going to be interesting to see where we go next…