A dozen independent retailers have signed up to Luton Town FC's football in the community scheme in a move that adds an extra dimension to the My Shop is Your Shop (MSYS) campaign.
The retailers agreed to form the Luton Town Community Partners group and develop ties with the Championship club at a recent meeting at Kenilworth Road Stadium.
In the coming weeks the group will work with the club on a range of ideas to involve the local community and schools. The scheme will then be delivered to independent retailers through the wholesale channel.
MSYS organisers believe the partnership will improve each store's profile and at the same time place more neighbourhood focus on the club. It is also hoped the scheme can act as a blueprint for the future with which to approach other league clubs.
MSYS chairman Alan Toft said: "This is another example of how MSYS is helping to drive footfall for independent retailers. Football is a big community sport and the scheme will lift the profile of independents in their neighbourhoods.
"All the ideas are being refined and these will be set down and agreed with Luton Town. Once we have a model we can then go forward and approach other professional league clubs."
Nisa-Today's retailer Kishor Patel, a Luton Town sponsor and supporter, said: "A number of independents should benefit from the scheme. It's very exciting and everyone at the meeting was positive about the plans, which should result in closer ties between independent retailers and local clubs."
Local Londis retailer Nevil Bowers agreed: "This is an excellent idea. Football has massive appeal and I know my customers and their children will respond."