This article is from Alison's weekly column for the Wirral News. This post is from 11th November 2013 and can be read on the Wirral News website here.
Last Saturday was a day to celebrate our local small businesses on Small Business Saturday. Small businesses contribute a lot to our town centres and we should appreciate them.
I was out in New Ferry which has a number of hardworking people working in its small businesses. You may have seen recently New Ferry recently got prepared for Christmas with the installation of Christmas lights which I hope has given the area a festive boost.
In Bromborough village the week before, we had a brilliant Christmas event, and traders also came together to switch the lights on for late night shopping in Heswall last Thursday.
Small business Saturday was a positive and successful day but I know that small businesses can find it tough at the moment and face many challenges.
If Labour form a government in 2015 we will take important measures to help our local businesses. Small businesses will be a priority for a Labour government as we know that they are also victim the cost of living crisis with rising business rates and energy prices.
I speak with local traders regularly and listen to their concerns and I would say that we can all play a part in helping our local retailers by using them this Christmas before rushing straight to the well-known retail chains.
This would not only benefit the local businesses but also by helping our local businesses we also help our town centres and therefore help our areas which benefits everyone including ourselves. They make a valuable contribution to the economy and our areas and it was great to celebrate them on Saturday.