27/11/2013 - Permalink

Saturday 7 December to be a big day for Shropshire’s small businesses

Related topics: Community

People are being encouraged to visit Shropshire’s town centres on Saturday 7 December 2013 to show their support for the county’s small businesses, and help provide a boost to Shropshire’s high streets.

The UK’s first-ever ‘Small Business Saturday’ is a new national initiative being held on what is one of the busiest shopping days of the year.

In Shropshire the day aims to raise the profile of the county’s small businesses and encourage people and organisations to buy from them, and special activities are being held in Shrewsbury, Bridgnorth, Ludlow, Much Wenlock, Oswestry, Whitchurch and Market Drayton.

In Shrewsbury, over 20 shopkeepers from Wyle Cop and Roushill/Mardol will be taking out stalls in The Square to showcase their businesses and their products and services, and to encourage people to visit these areas of the town.  A magician will be entertaining passers-by between 12noon and 2pm.

On the same day, festive markets are being held in Bridgnorth, Ludlow and Much Wenlock, with local crafts and produce on sale.

And Oswestry, Whitchurch and Market Drayton will be celebrating their markets as well as their small shopkeepers with special offers available on the day.

Steve Charmley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for business growth, said:

“Saturday 7 December promises to be the biggest day of the year for many of our small businesses, and particularly the small retailers in our town centres.

“This fantastic new initiative is a great way to promote and support Shropshire’s small businesses, which make a massive contribution to the local, and national, economy.

“There’s lots going on in towns across Shropshire, and I encourage people to head to their nearest town centre on the day and show their support for our small businesses.”

Supported by The Prime Minister, the Government and all major political parties, Small Business Saturday has been launched to celebrate what small businesses of all kinds do both locally and nationally, and to ask everyone to make a special effort to support and do business with them, both on the day and beyond.

The Small Business Saturday initiative started in the United States in 2010 and has so far generated $5.5bn for small businesses in the USA.  It is hoped that this success will be replicated in the UK.

The British Chambers of Commerce and the Federation of Small Businesses have signed up to the UK initiative, which is supported by American Express and O2.

The national Small Business Saturday campaign will be using Facebook and twitter to share information, good ideas, success stories and photos.

To keep up to date with what is going on, ‘like’ the Small Business Saturday UK Facebook page or follow @SmallBizSatUK on Twitter.

Latest figures show that more than nine out of 10 businesses in Shropshire employ fewer than 10 people.  During 2011 these small businesses helped to create 2,300 additional jobs in Shropshire.

The UK’s small businesses provide almost two thirds of private sector employment and almost half of private sector turnover.