SMALL traders are backing plans which a pressure group believes could turn their town into a tourism “gold mine”.

Eco-group Transition is looking to give businesses on Holywell High Street a boost by bringing more people to the town through tourism and encouraging more food and crafts to be produced locally.

The main shopping street has been in steady decline, but plans to revitalise the town have been backed by traders.

Roberta Owen, chair of Transition Holywell and District, said: “The town should be a tourism gold mine. We are looking to improve footpath links between the High Street, Greenfield Valley and St Winifride’s Well.

“They are all seen as separate things. Thousands of pilgrims come to St Winifride’s but they don’t come to the High Street.

“We have brilliant walking country and so much history, so we want to get a decent walking link.

“If more people would get in to the town centre, they would appreciate it is the prettiest town centre in Flintshire.”

The group recently helped traders decorate their shops during the Cadi Ha festival and the extra effort proved a hit.

Mrs Owen said: “The traders are on board because it is all about small local businesses and trying to support them rather than big corporations. It is important to support local businesses. The more local, the better.”

With the help of Transition, residents have already set up sewing and craft groups with the aim of opening a store on the High Street to sell their products.

Simon Nicholls runs Kassidy’s  cafe on the High Street and he said he supported the work Transition was doing.

He said: “The High Street is dead. It has been in steady decline, but it got worse when Woolworths closed.

“There are less people coming in and less trade. The High Street has got a lot of potential and it would be nice to see more people about.”

Sue Elleby, who runs DS Embroidery said: “It’s really quiet at the moment. I support what Transition is doing. Anything that can boost the town is a good thing.”