Mill Road has frequently hit the press for being one of the most desirable places to live in the country. The Traders’ Association and other groups aim to publicise the area as much as possible. It’s a unique and wonderful place to live, work or visit and we want to tell everyone!
We work closely with the local media, in particular with Cambridge Edition and Cambridge 105, which is our community radio station (based just off Mill Road and run almost entirely by volunteers). Cambridge 105 had a dedicated Mill Road programme for over a year. They provide excellent information on Cambridge and they have regular fortnightly slot on their day time show for all things Mill Road.
The Mill Road Mile
One local activist and graphic designer, Pam Wesson, put together the Mill Road mile fold-out map. It shows all shops along each side of the road. You’ll find them at a range of local events!
Annual Shop Award
We’ve teamed up with Cambridge Edition on our annual Shop Award Scheme. It takes place in December, around the time of our Winter Fair, and gives the title of ‘Pride of Mill Road’ to one of our local businesses. In 2013, we looked for the best presented shop (jointly won by Hilary’s Greengrocer and the Urban Larder). in 2014, the pride of Mill Road was given to the Garden Kitchen for their Best Customer Service.
Our Mayor of Cambridge is very supportive of the Mill Road area. She spent a day touring our shops to meet our wonderful traders and also comes along to our events.
Advertising can be really expensive, but the Traders’ Association gives smaller businesses the opportunity to club together to by group adverts, like this one in the Cambridge News. We’re working on a regular monthly feature with our local media.
Traders often say that we could do with better signage across the city to help people find Mill Road. We had a new sign installed in 2013 at Parkers’ Piece, but we’re also working on a design for the top of Mill Road. Traders also want to see some better signage at the train station, since we’re only 10 minutes away from there.
Local people are passionate about this area and one resident, Alison Power, has even launched a dedicated blog and twitter feed called ‘There’s Something About Mill Road’. Follow her @MillRoadCambs to hear all of the latest.
Working with Students
With two major Universities in the vicinity, the Traders’ Association has taken the opportunity to work with local students.
In 2013 and 2014, we worked with Anglia Ruskin’s Lord Ashcroft International Business School, commissioning students to carry out research in the area and provide marketing suggestions for the Association.
In 2014, we worked with University of Cambridge Judge Business School on how best to encourage students to use the area.
We also work in close partnership with nearby college Hughes Hall, which is located at the top of Mill Road.
Events are proven to be a very successful way of generating publicity and interest in an area. We’ve established regular pop up food markets, outdoor cinema events and festive lights switch on celebrations for the community. In addition, we’re hoping to set up a Summer Fair for Mill Road and promotional trails for Halloween and Easter.
Building on the success of the old Milly Card scheme, we’ve now moved to online offers through our consumer mailing list. The mailing list is specifically for people interested in shopping on Mill Road and shares discounts and events offers. (To sign up, visit the ‘Offers’ page).