WATCH: Try Sunderland 1st host fair to promote local businesses

Local businesses gathered their stock onto stalls on Sunday March 13th at the first Try Sunderland 1st business fair in order to promote their products.

Stall owners included Vixs Trinkets, a handmade jewellery store, Just Fuse It, who specialise in handmade items, Super Geek Stuff, a retailer of all things geeky, Grans canny gifts, handmade decorations and ornaments and Elaine’s Usborne books, good quality books for children.

The event was their first of 2016 and was hosted at the Sunderland Wall.

Rachel Lowe came up with the idea of ‘Try Sunderland 1st’ and organises events for local businesses to promote their products: “It was just a random idea one night which originally started as just a Facebook page. A lot of people moan that there isn’t a lot around Sunderland so I got a lot of support from the local people.

Rachel said: “What I do is I organise fairs for small, local businesses to help promote what they do. As I’m not from Sunderland, I feel that a lot of people who live in Sunderland don’t see what they have on the door step.”

Stall owner Claire Brannen from ‘Super Geek Stuff’ said: “We went to Try Sunderland 1st last year… it was just a really great opportunity to highlight all of the local businesses which don’t have retail opportunities like a shop front and things like that and basically just get the word out there to people who don’t come across us very often.”

Try Sunderland 1st also team up with other business fairs such as ‘scifair’ to help each other promote their events.

Elaine Palmer Lawler, owner of the book stall at Sunderland 1st, runs the event scifair alongside husband Keith. This is where she met Rachel who was handing out her Try Sunderland 1st flyers. The two teamed up and attend each other’s fairs in order to spread the word about the importance of supporting local businesses.

Elaine said that scifair: “is a similar event to Rachel’s, but geekier. There’s a lot of dressing up. We sometimes have themes such as Doctor Who!”

If you would like more information on Try Sunderland 1st events or want to get your business involved, check out their Facebook page by searching ‘Try Sunderland 1st’ or email Rachel at

For more information about scifair visit their website

Comments are closed.