Category Archives: Festivals

The Big Show (Y Sioe Fawr)

A few weeks ago I attended the Royal Welsh Show (Y Sioe Fawr) at Llanelwedd/Builth Wells.  For a number of years I have been to the Royal Highland Show at Ingliston and have always thought it to be a large … Continue reading

Posted in Farmers Markets, Festivals, Food and Beverage, Food Quality, Food Retailing, Markets, Producers, Rates, Retail Economy, Retailers, Rural, Sustainability, Tax | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gardens and Gin

I sometimes wonder what visitors make of Scotland. When I first moved up we did a lot of the tourist things, as people and family visited, but as life goes on it is all too easy to look to further … Continue reading

Posted in Alcohol, Architecture, Buildings, Community, Distillery, Edinburgh, Festivals, Gardens, Gin, Historic Shops, Royal Mile, Scotland Food and Drink, Spaces, Urban History | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Market Time

I suspect that my interest in markets was sparked at a young age when my father would take me to the livestock market and my mother would take me to the open-air market (Cheapside) and to the covered food market, … Continue reading

Posted in Christmas, Experiential, Farmers Markets, Festivals, Food, Krakow, London, Markets, Places, Spaces, Streetscapes, Urban History | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Lampeter Food Festival

As I noted in my last post, I was based down in Wales for personal reasons for much of July. It did however allow me to return to Lampeter, the small West Walian town where I spent almost four years … Continue reading

Posted in Festivals, Food, Food Retailing, High Streets, organic, Retail Economy, Rural, Town Centres | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Conversation: Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Silver Linings

The University of Stirling is a supporter of The Conversation, and I recently had a commentary published there. I reblog it here. ’Tis the season to spend, spend, spend … or so retailers would have us think By Leigh Sparks, … Continue reading

Posted in Black Friday, Christmas, Consumer Change, Cyber Monday, Festivals, Internet, Internet shopping, Localisation, Online Retailing, Sales | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Singapore Times

As regular readers of this blog already know, the Institute for Retail Studies at the University of Stirling has had programmes and partners in Singapore for a long time, targeted both at Singaporean students and retailers and those in the … Continue reading

Posted in Alumni, Courts Asia, Festivals, Government, International Retailing, Markets, Qualifications, Retail Degrees, Shopping Centres, University of Stirling | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Business Improvement Districts: Gatherings and Huddles

As I have written before, in reading this post you have to remember that I am a Board Member of BIDs (Business Improvement Districts) Scotland and thus believe they have a role to play in Scotland and in Scotland’s town … Continue reading

Posted in BIDS, Entrepreneurship, Festivals, Food Retailing, Food Tourism, Heritage, Innovation, Markets, Places, Scotland Food and Drink, Scotland's Town and High Streets, Town Centre Review, Town Centres | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Whose Town is it Anyway?” Reflections on Scotland’s Towns Conference

Take one minister (no, not of the Co-operative Methodist type), a couple of passionate key note presenters and well over 100 people mainly from across Scotland, wanting, willing and able to share their town stories and opportunities and you get … Continue reading

Posted in BIDS, Festivals, Food, Government, High Streets, Local Retailers, Places, Scotland's Town and High Streets, Town Centre Review, Town Centres | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Shock and Awe

I am too young to be an ageing hippie – honest. And I certainly no longer have the hair for it. But a few nights ago we went to the Neil Young and Crazy Horse show in Glasgow. Growing up … Continue reading

Posted in Festivals, Merchandising, Music, Retailing, Sport, Tourism, USA | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

A Market is for Life not just for Christmas

As has been noted in these pages, I am not a great fan of the Orange One. The idea that celebrity can save the high street is not one I ascribe to readily, and the Portas review for me missed … Continue reading

Posted in Farmers Markets, Festivals, Independents, Localisation, Markets, Mary Portas, Places, Town Centres | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments