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Shop occupancy rates improve despite cost-of-living crisis

30 Jan 2023

The number of shops lying vacant on British high streets fell during the final three months of 2022, despite pressure on both companies and consumers from the rising cost of living.
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Bike Europe has reported Halfords’ financial statement demonstrating that cycling sales have dropped to pre-covid levels.

18 Jan 2023

The article reports that, in 2021, Halfords saw its annual cycling sales double and stocks dry up. However, by the middle of 2022, it says, warning signs were appearing as inflation and supply... Read more…

Seaside town bucks the trend with indie retail thriving

16 Jan 2023

Weston-super-Mare seems to be one town in the UK bucking the national trend, with new shops opening and businesses reporting an increase in trade, according to a report by Bristol Live.
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Indie bookshop numbers hit 10-year high in 2022 defying tough retail climate

16 Jan 2023

The number of independent bookshops in the UK and Ireland climbed to a 10-year high in 2022, as the book trade defied the odds in an otherwise tough year for high street retailers.
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New King’s banknotes to enter circulation by mid-2024

12 Jan 2023

New banknotes featuring King Charles are to enter circulation by mid-2024. The King’s portrait will appear on four polymer banknotes (£5, £10, £20, and £50).... Read more…

Government scales back energy bill support for businesses

12 Jan 2023

The government has announced it is to scale back support for businesses and their energy bills after warning that the current level of help was too expensive.
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Sector expertise and user experience counts when it comes to retail finance

10 Jan 2023

With retail finance schemes remaining a preferable route for retailers to boost sales during recession than the financial hit required by heavy product discounting, the Association of Cycle... Read more…

Portugal becomes first EU country to cut VAT on bicycle purchases this year

10 Jan 2023

Portugal has become the first EU country to cut VAT on bicycle purchases this year, from 23% to 6%.
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One in three responds to Big Bike Revival to use bike for one in two journeys previously taken by car

9 Jan 2023

Cycling UK says that its Big Bike Revival programme, which encourages people to get unused bikes out of their garages and sheds and start using them for everyday trips, has led to a third of... Read more…

Busiest year yet for TfL’s cycle hire scheme

9 Jan 2023

Transport for London’s (TfL) cycle hire scheme saw more bikes hired during 2022 than any other year in the scheme’s history, with 11.5 million rentals across the year.
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IRC backs ‘Colour Friday’ alternative to Black Friday sales

Posted on in Business News, Cycles News

The IRC has joined bira and other retail trade associations in backing the ‘Colour Friday’ alternative to this week’s Back Friday sales.

The ‘Colour Friday’ initiative was first orchestrated by the UK Ambassador for Creative Small Businesses, Holly Tucker MBE, as a way of encouraging people to choose shopping at small independent businesses over impulse buying from big online retail giants in the annual ‘Black Friday’ sales. At the time of writing, nearly 2,800 small businesses and consumers have listed their support.

Colour Friday

It goes without saying that the pressure to participate in Black Friday affects independent retailers across the UK. The expectation to offer Black Friday discounts are high, but the incentives can be low with the current rises in inflation and energy prices.

On her website, Holly mentions that:

·       In a recent poll, half of UK small business owners said they’re genuinely concerned that this will be their last Christmas trading.

·       Carbon emissions generated from Black Friday online sales alone are equivalent to 215 flights from London to Sydney?

·       89% of shoppers reported finding Black Friday highly stressful?

·       A quarter of Brits surveyed said they regretted their Christmas Black Friday buys.

bira recently conducted a survey asking its members to share their thoughts on Black Friday, and whether they knew of any alternatives. A resounding majority told them no, so, like bira, the IRC wanted to bring attention to a different initiative you can take part in.

You can find out more here.

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