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Portsmouth MP urges people to ‘Support Local’ to help city’s small businesses get through crisis

Many small businesses across the country have been devastated by the coronavirus crisis. Whilst recognising efforts of Government and the council to offer assistance, Stephen Morgan MP is urging everyone in Portsmouth to play their part and to ‘support local’. 

In late March, the Prime Minister ordered all pubs, restaurants, gyms and other social venues across the country to close their doors for the foreseeable future, leaving many business owners and their employees at risk in Portsmouth.

While measures such as social distancing and self-isolation are vital in helping to curb the spread of the deadly disease, they have also threatened to devastate the city’s local businesses.

Despite loans, grants and practical support being available via local authorities and other bodies, many businesses have not reached out at all.

City MP Stephen Morgan has been working constructively with Ministers to ensure a package of support for companies, whilst challenging the Government to do better and act faster to protect small businesses in Portsmouth.

Lobbying the Chancellor to ensure a wide-ranging programme of help, liaising with the city council over local support, and backing campaigns to urging residents to shop and trade locally, the Portsmouth South MP has welcomed efforts by Strong Island, based in Southsea, encouraging local people to ‘Support Local and Independents’.

Throwing his weight behind this local campaign, and teaming up with ‘Small Business Britain’ the UK’s leading champion of small businesses, Stephen Morgan MP said:

“Small businesses are the bedrock of our economy in Portsmouth. Helping to protect them during the coronavirus crisis protects livelihoods, protects jobs and protects our communities.

While the government and local bodies are doing their part to protect the economy, there are also plenty of ways that people can support their favourite local businesses, whether they are shops, music venues or local online stores.

Many businesses can be supported through this crisis and can be offered hope and a future for themselves, their families and their staff if we all do our bit and help them”.

There are over 5.8 million small businesses in the UK. According to Small Business Britain’s Big Support campaign, research shows that more than half (55%) of businesses have not got any advice or support for their business so far. A third (66%) are not confident in their business, and nearly 70% expect their revenues to fall by over 50%.

The city MP added:

“Businesses are at risk of running low on hope. There is support out there from financial and coaching, to advice and guidance. We all need to make sure small businesses are taking it up.

It’s undeniably tough right now and I am committed to doing everything in my power to ensure small businesses can and will get through this.

As Parliament returns from recess this week, I will continue to lobby Ministers over their plans to make sure there are no gaps in provision and the package of support for Portsmouth is as comprehensive as it needs to be.

Small businesses are the heart of our communities. Let’s all do what we can to support local and independent so that small businesses get all the support they need to survive and thrive”.

 

Sources of support as examples: