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BBC analysis reveals full extent of changes to Britain’s High Streets

6 Dec 2022

The BBC has published comprehensive analysis of Ordnance Survey data that reveals the full extent of changes to Britain's High Streets after two years of Covid lockdowns and trading... Read more…

Cycling UK names its 100 Women in Cycling 2022

30 Nov 2022

Cycling UK has published its annual 100 Women in Cycling 2022 list celebrating inspirational women in cycling.
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Cycling in London up 40% since the start of the pandemic, TfL reports

30 Nov 2022

Cycling in London has increased by 40% since the start of the pandemic, including a near-doubling of journeys by bike at the weekend, according to the newly published annual Travel in London... Read more…

UKCA mark deadline delayed - CE marks okay to use till end of 2024

29 Nov 2022

The Business Secretary, Grant Shapps, has announced that businesses are to be given a further two years to apply new product safety marking.
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New report claims UK lagging behind Europe in cycling infrastructure development

29 Nov 2022

A new survey of 2,000 British cyclists, which is part of a wider European report, claims that only just over a quarter of people in the UK think their local cycling infrastructure has improved... Read more…

Large number of bike shops help Cambridge be as named best city for independent retailers

24 Nov 2022

According to a new survey, Cambridge is the best in the country for independent shopping to support small businesses. The study found that many of the city's small businesses turned out to be... Read more…

Indie Retailers in York to get funding boost from City Council

22 Nov 2022

Groups of independent retailers in York are to receive a £25,000 funding boost to help with promotion during the Christmas trading period and to attract more customers in 2023.
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IRC backs ‘Colour Friday’ alternative to Black Friday sales

22 Nov 2022

The IRC has joined bira and other retail trade associations in backing the ‘Colour Friday’ alternative to this week’s Black Friday sales.
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Wandsworth indies comes together to boost local business during Christmas

21 Nov 2022

Shop owners in Earlsfield, Wandsworth are teaming up in the run-up to keep the high street busy in the run-up to Christmas. With the cost-of-living crisis affecting independent shops, the... Read more…

V12 are extending their opening hours to support retailers and customers during this festive period.

21 Nov 2022

During this festive period, V12 want to increase the support available to you and your customers. From this Friday their Customer Services, Underwriting and Validations teams will be operating... Read more…

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Retail industry reacts to Chancellor’s mini budget

Posted on in Business News, Cycles News

Following the Chancellor’s mini-budget last week, the retail industry has been reacting to the support package for small businesses and independent shops….including some of the items conspicuous by their absence.

Following Kwasi Kwarteng’s statement, the Government provided further details to its plans to help cut energy bills for businesses through the new government Energy Bill Relief Scheme. The Government will provide a discount on wholesale gas and electricity prices, and it will apply to fixed contracts agreed on or after 1 April 2022, as well as variable and flexible tariffs and contracts. To deliver the scheme the Government has set a “Supported Wholesale Price” – expected to be 21.1p per kwh for electricity and 7.5p per Kwh for gas. The scheme will apply to energy usage from 1 October 2022 to 31 March 2023 for businesses and will be reviewed in three months to inform decisions on future support after March 2023.

However, industry leaders have also said that the Chancellor’s economic plan failed to address business rates or VAT cuts that are needed to support the high street. The consensus view is that whilst much of the Chancellor’s statement was welcome, more support is needed for parts of the economy heavily hit by the pandemic and likely to come under pressure from households stretched by the rising cost of living.

Money notes

The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) chief executive, James Lowman, said: “We welcome that the government’s plan aims to stimulate growth and incentivise investment by businesses. In the last 12 months local shops have invested £605million in improving services, making their businesses more sustainable, and creating secure local jobs.”

However, retail leaders also called for action on business rates before large bill increases are expected to take place next year.

Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium (BRC), said: “Retailers are facing immense cost pressures, not just from energy bills, but also a weak pound, rising commodity prices, high transport costs, a tight labour market and the cumulative burden of government-imposed costs.

“Yet what was missing from today’s announcement, was any mention of business rates, which are set to jump by 10% next April, inflicting another £800m in unaffordable tax rises on already squeezed retailers.

“It is inevitable that such additional taxes will ultimately be passed through to families in the form of higher prices.”

Experts at Altus Group predicted that total business rates bill are due to jump by more than £5.3 billion once the end of discounts for retail, leisure and hospitality firms are also taken into account.

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