Shoppers in Worcester came out to support small businesses on the annual Small Business Saturday as they head into the crucial festive trading period. Small Business Saturday promotes small businesses and the difference they make to the local community and economy.
Small Business Saturday 2021 marks the ninth year of the event in the UK, and the campaign has grown significantly each year. In 2020, £1.1 billion was spent with small businesses across the day. Though the campaign usually culminates with one specific date, the intention behind the campaign is to have longer-lasting effects and encourage shoppers to be more aware of the benefits of supporting smaller businesses all year round.
In Worcester the annual Victorian Fayre took place on the same weekend as Small Business Saturday, meaning both events took place in the city at the same time. Traders benefitted from higher footfall as visitors came to enjoy a series of artistic performances while shopping in local businesses.
Small businesses have faced a tough time during the pandemic, though government support has helped alleviate the pressure. Worcester MP Robin Walker has encouraged residents and visitors to the city to spend their money locally to ensure the business community continues to thrive. Robin said:
“Small businesses are the lifeblood of our community. They are often run by local people and provide jobs for the local area. It is vital that we support small businesses all year round, but I am grateful for the organisers of Small Business Saturday who recognise their contribution every year.
“Our government has been protecting businesses and employees with over £407 billion of economic support throughout the pandemic including over £100 billion in business loans. We have continued with Small Business Rates Relief with over 700,000 eligible businesses across the country benefitting from a tax cut worth £7 billion.
“Among the many shops I had the pleasure to visit on Saturday I was able to meet with Tim Evans of Toys and Games of Worcester, where I was able to get an early start on the family Christmas presents. Last week the businesses on Broad Street faced the added challenge of emergency closures after the Poundland building was declared unsafe following damage as a result of Storm Arwen. I worked with traders, the local councils, and the building owners the Crown Estates to ensure businesses could get back up and running. I was glad to see the street opened in time for the Fayre and I know further steps are being taken to show the buildings in that area are open for business.
“As the Party of business, this Conservative Government is committed to providing the tools, skills and support that business owners need to make a full economic recovery and build back better from the pandemic”.
Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said:
“We all know the impact that COVID-19 has had on our small businesses, and we have all been humbled by the resilience, resolve and determination they have shown in innovating and adapting to the challenges of the pandemic.
"Small Business Saturday 2021 is an opportunity to celebrate our small businesses and this Conservative government will make sure the UK’s many businesses have the support and skills they need to drive the innovation, growth and job creation we need as we move towards a secure and prosperous future.”