Arsenal centre backs past and present, Leah Williamson and Tony Adams, have joined Aaron Ramsdale, Emile Smith Rowe, Rob Holding and Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang in supporting local businesses, this time Buckenham Locksmiths, as part of the Arsenal Supporting Supporters series.
Inspired by player-business partnerships of yesteryear and kicked off by local pub, The Tollington and Rob Holding, this is the fifth instalment in a series of local businesses pairing up with members of the Arsenal men’s and women’s teams to raise awareness of their services and drive footfall on and around matchday. Many local businesses and community organisations who surround the local area were just as pleased as the club to see fans return to Emirates Stadium this season after matches were played behind closed doors.
Alongside Arsenal players, a variety of local businesses feature in the campaign, some of which are well known to Arsenal fans and others that need the extra support and awareness. Along with adverts which are aired across the businesses’ and club channels, the businesses are a part of Arsenal fixtures and feature on the perimeter boards, on the stadium’s big screens and inside the matchday programme.
This film sees Leah feature in a 60-second advert alongside Gunners great Tony - and you can see it by clicking the 'Play' button above.
Buckenham Locksmiths is just around the corner from Emirates Stadium on Blackstock Road and is the very epitome of a family business.
Fourth-generation locksmith, Jack Romero, said:
“My great grandfather, Arthur Buckenham, started the business in 1959. His daughter Jen and her husband Don – my grandma and grandad – then joined the business in 1970… just in time for Arsenal’s double! They are still working there today. As is my mum, Helen, and – since 2012, when I joined straight from school aged 16 – me too, so it really is a family business.
“We’re all big Arsenal fans. We have always done quite a lot of work for Arsenal and we’ve always loved having a relationship with the club.”
For a business so steeped in The Arsenal, Jack says it a real thrill to be asked to be part of our local business initiative, but explains that it almost didn’t happen.
“It absolutely blew us away when the club approached us to suggest we were part of the Supporting Supporters scheme. Well, I say that, but my grandad was in the shop when the people from Arsenal came in and he’s pretty old school and I think he nearly put them off as he didn’t want too much fuss!
“But luckily we managed to get word to them that we were very keen and now grandad’s really into it – he came to the video shoot with my sister and had a great time. That was a fantastic day, Leah and Tony were so nice and we loved the idea for the advert.”
“It was quite surreal, we just couldn’t believe all this was being done for our little locksmiths – you just don’t think this kind of thing happens to your business.
“All of the adverts have been so good. Like everyone, I couldn’t stop watching Aaron in the Chip Inn! As a fan, I knew it related back to the banter he was having with the fans at Leicester, I thought that was so clever.”
Arsenal’s involvement with Buckenhams has been a boost for a company who, like so many small businesses, have endured hard times throughout the pandemic.
“The pandemic has been tough for us – like the majority of businesses,” says Jack. “We opened for a couple of days a week for some specialist work we could still generate but ultimately, if it hadn’t been for the furlough money, I’m not sure how we would have coped.
“We’re really thankful to Arsenal to be involved in this project – it’s a dream come true to be honest.”
Finally, the fact the Buckenhams advert features legendary centre-halves from both the men’s and the women’s team is something Jack and his family were really pleased about.
“We love the association with Arsenal Women,” confirms Jack. “Like a lot of football fans, I didn’t follow the women’s game closely but over recent years, the fact that it’s now easier to find on TV and all over the media means I now watch the game – and Arsenal in particular of course. I love how we are one of the real superpowers of the game and the fact there will be 20,000 fans at the Tottenham game – including me – says it all really.”
Talking about the campaign, Arsenal CEO, Vinai Venkatesham added:
“This is one of a number of ways we are trying to support the local community. After listening to the local businesses involved, it was clear there was one thing in particular they needed – awareness. So, we got to work on creating a series of adverts in partnership with them which will hopefully ensure every Arsenal fan knows who they are and how they can use the brilliant services they offer.”
To watch the Buckenham Locksmiths advert and learn more about the initiative, click here - and make sure you're following us on social media to discover the businesses involved in the initiative.
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