We posed a question to the residents of the Lithgow region on our Facebook page recently. We asked 'If you could have one new store open in Lithgow, what would it be?'.
More than 430 comments later, the post is still seeing activity as commenters debate back and forth and share their opinions with the community.
One thing that stood out among the many comments was the yearning it seems for more national retailers to make their way to Lithgow.
We say however, be careful what you wish for.
It's one thing to want a Kmart or similar store to suddenly make an appearance in town but it's important too to consider what the Lithgow region already offers.
We won't play favourites and list specific businesses. But it's important to recognise that these local stores employ local people and so any money spent here goes to local families and bolsters the local economy. Much more than say, leaving to shop elsewhere or buying online.
We get it, sometimes you can only get certain things online and you have no choice, but a choice you can make is to shop at the Lithgow location of a store that might also exist in Bathurst or Sydney.
More in opinion:
Of course there are some businesses that people ask for that are little more than a pipedream, but some are certainly capable of coming to town.
What it takes though, is a strong local economy and consumer activity. That's what these big companies look for when making the choice to move here.
They might be big companies, but they employ local people. It's one thing to want something, it's another to work for it.
On the other side of the coin, supporting local business can attract further investment but it also keeps those stores that are already here around. People like to complain after a certain business shuts their doors but the reality is that all it takes sometimes is a bit more local involvement.
If you're the type to share your news on social media, we'd love to see your example of supporting Lithgow region businesses. Tag us on Instagram or post a photo to our Facebook page. It could be something as small as a coffee at a local cafe or a new shirt, or maybe you catered a big get together. Whatever it is we'd love to see it.
Let's get around local industry and make it stronger and you'll be surprised what it can lead to.
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