John Healey MP has called for more support for local high streets and small firms on Small Business Saturday tomorrow (Saturday 4 December).

According to the Federation of Small Businesses, SMEs make up 99% of the business population in the UK with almost two-thirds of jobs. Small Business Saturday – celebrates small business success and encourages consumers to ‘shop local’ and to support businesses in their communities.

John has highlighted the work done by small businesses during the pandemic, and how the likes of the local butchers, bars, post offices, hair salons and restaurants are the heart of local communities and high streets.

John said: “I’m strongly behind Small Business Saturday. Small firms and their staff have gone above and beyond recently, helping people through the pandemic and trying to keep going themselves. So this year’s a special chance for us all to say a big ‘thank you’ to the local shops and small businesses.

“Many small businesses have battled through the pandemic and now face further pressures like rent debt, high business rates, supply chain hold-ups and soaring energy costs.

“So I’d urge people to ‘go local’ this weekend and in the run-up to Christmas. This is the chance for us to show support for the small local businesses that do so much to keep local high streets and towns going.”

Labour knows many small businesses need a fair chance to recover and thrive. The party has pledged to cut then scrap business rates, and replace them with a new fairer form of business taxation that stops penalising high street firms by balancing the playing field between bricks and mortar businesses and online giants.