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Shop Local: MPs urge Barking and Dagenham residents to support independent businesses hit by second lockdown

PUBLISHED: 07:00 11 November 2020

Barking MP Margaret Hodge and Dagenham and Rainham MP Jon Cruddas. Pictures: Ken Mears / Pawel Szewczyk

Barking MP Margaret Hodge and Dagenham and Rainham MP Jon Cruddas. Pictures: Ken Mears / Pawel Szewczyk

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The borough’s MPs have urged people to help independent businesses in their area survive the pandemic after shops shut their doors for a second lockdown.

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Many independent shops and small businesses are struggling to survive the pandemic, with Covid-19 restrictions hindering recovery and a desperately needed trade boost in the lead-up to Christmas.

However, being forced shut up shop for another four weeks from Thursday, November 5 - after closing for almost three months during the first lockdown - was a devastating blow.

Dagenham and Rainham MP Jon Cruddas said: “The pandemic has had a harsh effect on our economy, hitting small independent businesses particularly hard.

“I would urge residents to consider using local shops during the pandemic to help keep small businesses afloat in these difficult times.

“Not all local shops will be able to open through this next lockdown, but those that are able to comply with safety guidelines will need our support.”

The national restrictions, which are in place until at least December 2, mean all non-essential retail shops and hospitality businesses have been forced to close to customers.

However, non-essential retail can remain open for delivery and click-and-collect orders while pubs, restaurants and cafes can still provide takeaway and delivery services.

MP for Barking Margaret Hodge said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has hit the high street hard and the second lockdown this month will make matters even more difficult for many local businesses.

“Once this lockdown is over, it is so important that we all shop with independent businesses as much as possible, supporting our high streets in the run-up to Christmas.

“During lockdown, lots of small businesses are running delivery-only services, so we can support them during lockdown, too.

“I’ll be shopping on the high street as much as possible this winter, rather than just shopping with big corporations, like Amazon, who have already had a bumper year.”

The government has indicated that after the current lockdown period, the three-tier system for local Covid-19 restrictions introduced in October will continue to be used.


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