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Business rate reform called for as industry reacts to landslide Labour election win

9 Jul 2024

Following Labour’s general election win, the retail industry has stressed the need for a business rates overhaul to protect high streets across the country.
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Bira calls on new Labour government to prioritise independent retail sector

9 Jul 2024

Following Labour’s landslide Election victory, Bira, the British Independent Retailers Association, has urged the new government to make good on its promise of change by prioritising the... Read more…

Much loved toyshop saved by owner's daughter

9 Jul 2024

A much-loved toy shop in Aberystwyth that was facing closure has been saved after the former shopkeeper's daughter decided to take over the reins.
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Inverness-based retailer wins coveted Drapers Award for Best Independent Footwear Retailer

9 Jul 2024

A family-owner retailer in Inverness, Begg Shoes, has been named Best Independent Footwear Retailer at the 2024 Drapers Footwear Awards, held annually to celebrate the outstanding achievements... Read more…

'Pay-as-you-feel' barber wins hairdressing award

9 Jul 2024

A man who offers "pay-as-you-feel" haircuts has been named the UK's best barber.
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The Times publishes its list of the seven best shopping streets in the UK

24 Jun 2024

The Times has just published its list of the seven best shopping streets in the UK.
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Indie retail village wins Hospitality Hero Velvet Award for 2024

24 Jun 2024

An independent retail village in Ely that celebrates its one-year anniversary this month has won the Hospitality Hero Velvet Award for 2024.
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Bike shop owner slams police’s “abject apathy” after three shops broken into in one night

24 Jun 2024

A cycle shop owner has criticised the police’s “abject apathy” towards bike theft after thieves attempted to break into his store for the second time in a year, on the same... Read more…

A simple comparison of the General Election manifestos

24 Jun 2024

With less than three weeks to go until the General Election, Bira has produced a simple table comparing manifestos for Labour, Conservatives, Liberal Democrats, Green Party and Reform UK, and... Read more…

Independents Day message - supporting independent shops boosts local jobs and economies.

24 Jun 2024

With the annual Independents’ Day weekend coming up on July 6th and 7th, independent retailers have been reinforcing the message that supporting independent shops boosts... Read more…

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'Pay-as-you-feel' barber wins hairdressing award

Posted on in Business News

A man who offers "pay-as-you-feel" haircuts has been named the UK's best barber.

Donal O'Leary, who works at the Apothecary 87 salon in the Doncaster suburb of Balby, won the Barber of the Year category at the 2024 UK Hair and Beauty Awards.

haircutMr O'Leary said he provided a vital service to people during the cost-of-living crisis by only charging them what they could afford. He was "in shock" after hearing he had won the title.

He added: "I never expected to win. It's something I've been striving for for a while." Mr O'Leary has been a barber for eight years and was encouraged to enter the contest after speaking to his girlfriend and family.

"I've always wanted to enter a competition like this," he said.

"But I've never had the courage to do it."

Haircuts with no fixed price are available once a week to both men and women.

Mr O'Leary added: "With how hard times are at the moment with the cost of living, we thought it would be great to give everyone the chance to have a haircut, make them look and feel good."

Customers include people who have been showering at gyms and sports centres because they were struggling to pay utility bills. Women, who often have to pay more for styling at female-centric salons, have also used the service.

"For some it's really been a massive thing," Mr O'Leary said.

"Being able to get a haircut for free or as much as they can afford is really beneficial."

Mr O'Leary learned to cut hair while he was a student at Trinity Western University in Canada, where he played for the football team.

He added that the pay-as-you-feel haircuts were "good for Doncaster".

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