Stirling Books has been Highly Commended in the Scotland Loves Local campaign’s High Street Heroes Awards.
The Maxwell Place store, run by manager Kayda Williams, joins Regional Champion Go Forth Stirling in the Roll of Honour for the Stirling Council area.
The High Street Heroes Awards recognise people, businesses and organisations who have gone above and beyond to support their communities through the coronavirus restrictions.
Popular second-hand shop Stirling Books was recognised for its work to support local people during the pandemic by launching a free book drop off service.
Kayda came up with the idea to help people who were isolated during lockdown and spent weeks personally dropping free books off at their doorsteps.
It was just the latest initiative from Stirling Books which has won several awards for supporting local charities and community groups.
Kayda said: “I’m delighted Stirling Books was named a High Street Hero and it’s a lovely feeling to know people appreciated the effort we put in to help them.
“The idea really took off once we put the message out on our Facebook page and I enjoyed bagging up books and delivering them out to people as far afield as Doune and Falkirk.
“Lots of people were asking me to deliver books to others on their behalf and it was great to put a smile on their face and see them give a thumbs up and a wave through the window when I dropped their package of books off.”
Since then, Kayda has continued to support her local community and recently raised more than £500 for Start-up Stirling.
The store, which is currently only open for online orders, held a Spooktober Fundraising raffle and collected donations for the charity.
Go Forth Stirling supported the event by donating sneeze screens and physical distancing floor stickers so the store could open for a day to host the fundraiser.
Kayda said: “We’ve not reopened yet following lockdown but we decided to open up for one day – on Halloween – so people could take part in the raffle and stock up on some books for winter.
“We were pleased with the help we got from Go Forth Stirling in bringing the screens and stickers along so quickly and we had a great day with lots of people coming in to visit us.
“We’ve redecorated the shop since lockdown and added some board games and seating spaces plus a section of free books. We hope to open up again fully soon but are erring on the side of caution for now.”
Go Forth Stirling Project Director Danielle McRorie-Smith said: “We were glad to be able to help Stirling Books with the supply of protective equipment for their fundraiser and delighted to see them named a High Street Hero for their work during the pandemic.”
The Scotland Loves Local campaign is spearheaded by Scotland’s Towns Partnership (STP) with the support of the Scottish Government.
The High Street Heroes awards scheme saw Regional Champions recognised in each of Scotland’s 32 local authority areas – alongside others who were Highly Commended – after more than 1,200 nominations were made.
STP’s Chief Officer, Phil Prentice,said: “The dedication with which people across Scotland have supported those around them during the pandemic has been remarkable.
“We’re delighted to shine a spotlight on the amazing difference our High Street Heroes have made and thank them for all they have done.
“They are an inspiration – local people helping their communities and customers like never before. They highlight the vital part that high street businesses play in our lives and why we must support them to ensure they continue to be there for us.”
Go Forth Stirling Business Improvement District (BID) represents close to 400 local businesses with a key objective of delivering projects and services which improve the area’s trading environment to benefit businesses, shoppers and visitors.
During the pandemic, the organisation implemented a host of initiatives including cutting the annual levy payment; the provision of protective equipment; digital grants; online training courses; PR campaigns and a comprehensive online business directory.