Dorking Town Partnership Logo

Using digital to bring us closer together: Escape to Dorking

20 February 2019

We understand that shoppers today are spoilt for choice. If you have an internet connection: shopping mecca. Whether you live in London or Guildford, Bristol or Kent, you need not leave the comfort of your living room when you have an Amazon fulfillment centre just a click away.

We believe – and we know – that small, independent businesses are the bedrock of our town. This is what makes Dorking so different from other market towns – and from other cities. Our independence gives us freedom. With that freedom we have the space to be creative, to be innovative, and to take chances.

Our independence enables us to offer our visitors and locals a unique, special experience.

Using the power of digital to create a seamless customer journey

We are working to create a seamless on and offline customer journey to feature the best of Dorking. We have launched a new website at and an inspirational promotional video:

We are collaborating with the multi award-winning LoyalFreeApp loyalty scheme to provide customers with a Dorking Destination guide and small business offers. We are engaging with our customers across our social media channels and asking them to share their Dorking experiences with us. We recently asked visitors to share their stories with us and they’ve responded.

These visitors braved inclement weather to visit our beautiful town for its unique and quality shopping, warm and inviting food, and picturesque setting. Here’s what our intrepid knitter from north London had to say about their visit to Dorking.

A knitter’s visit from North London

As avid knitters, my sister and I had long been promising ourselves a visit to the amazing The Gilliangladrag Fluff-a-torium in the Surrey Market town of Dorking. So on a very wet Monday morning we set off from Hampstead by bus, tube, train and taxi and arrived in the incredibly picturesque West Street. Our taxi driver from the station was extremely jolly and helpful; a perfect introduction to what Dorking had in store for us.

The Gilliangladrag Fluff-a-torium was absolutely everything we knew it would be; full of colour and warmth and a huge range of quality materials. We were greeted with a big smile and once we hade deliberated over our purchases, we were recommended to the Dorking Deli as the ideal place for lunch.

The menu at the Dorking Deli was a refreshing change from the usual fare and we were delighted with our hearty cauliflower stew and spicy falafel. We wandered up the High Street and peered in all the wonderful antique shops.

We absolutely loved our day out despite the heavy rain and are already planning our next day out!

Alitzah from Hampstead

Here is why our small businesses are so important to Dorking:

We are inspired by other local communities and share the independent spirit we see in other towns here and abroad.

Small Businesses Create Jobs

They create meaningful work for locals. We tend to feel a connection with our employers and coworkers and feel invested in our company’s growth if it is a small business.

Small Businesses Keep Money in Dorking

When local Dorkinians and visitors shop local, their money stays local. It goes to a local employee, who goes on to shop locally. It creates a ripple effect and it benefits the entire community.

Small Businesses Build Community

Many small businesses support local charitable organisations financially. This directly benefits local citizens and the community. As philanthropists, coaches, volunteers and community partners, business owners are invested in Dorking. Just look at the businesses supporting the local football club, the philanthropists of Dorking Friends, and others.

Small Businesses Shop Local Too

Many businesses will source their products and food locally in order to reflect their local area. They are independent and will therefore think and act accordingly. They will collaborate with local suppliers and their menus and offerings will usually reflect the local area. From the White Horse Dorking sourcing its produce locally to The Dorking ButcheryTwo Many CooksSorrel…the list goes on and on.

Small Businesses are the Future

Business owners are leaders. They are entrepreneurs and innovators. They take calculated risks and get things done. They understand how to build communities and collaborate to achieve a shared vision for the future. And that is exactly what our business leaders are doing in Dorking.

Share your story

Have you visited Dorking recently? Are you a Dorking local and have a story to share?  Contact us and share your story.

Add a Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Dorking Town Partnership
156 South Street
Dorking, RH4 2HF

T: 07377 0966892

© 2022 Dorking Town Partnership
Skip to content