Tom Blenkinsop MP Supporting Small Business Saturday

Tom Blenkinsop MP has joined Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna MP in celebrating the contribution of small firms in Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland as part of this year’s Small Business Saturday on 6 December.

Small Business Saturday is a grass-roots campaign that encourages people to shop locally and support small businesses in the local community. Last year it was the biggest celebration of small businesses in the UK and gave a boost to local shops through extra trade of nearly £500m.

Tom said:
“It is so important that we support our small and independent businesses. They are a vital part of our local economy and local community and we need to get behind them. They matter to our town, like Rag and Doll, an up and coming fashion label based in Guisborough, who I visited just at the weekend. And this weekend I will be visiting Tim and his wife Sheila who run Real Meals in Saltburn. They add character and are a source of local jobs.

“Last year I took part in Small Business Saturday. It was big success and it was brilliant to meet so many great businesses doing a fantastic job. The campaign helped raise awareness of what they do and the choice they bring to our community. We all need to put our hands in our pockets to make sure we back our local businesses. This year I’ll be getting fully behind the campaign again and giving my support to our local businesses.

“So many local businesses are doing a fantastic job. They give us greater choice and that something a little bit special. We all need to put our hands in our pockets to back our local businesses.”

Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna MP said:
“Last year when I first called for the UK to have its own Small Business Saturday, I could not have envisaged what we managed to achieve. We helped create the biggest celebration of small business and entrepreneurs that the country has seen and it helped give a boost to their bottom line. We brought together a grass roots coalition including business organisations and local authorities to make it happen.

“On one of the busiest shopping days of the year Small Business Saturday puts a spotlight on the huge contribution of small businesses and encourages people to buy from small shops and independent firms. This year we want it to be bigger and better. Please do put it in your diary.”

Tim Beswick, manager of Real Meals, said:
“Small Business Saturday is a great initiative that puts supporting local businesses at the forefront to people’s shopping minds. The key then is to show them what a fantastic experience it can be and the importance of supporting small businesses to the local economy – and hopefully they keep coming back throughout the year.”

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