Rishi Sunak has urged the people of Yorkshire to back their high street and shop safely.
The Chancellor recently visited retailers reopening their doors on Northallerton High Street to see measures being taken to keep staff and customers safe.
More than 600,000 jobs in Yorkshire and the Humber have been protected under the government’s job retention scheme, allowing them to return to work as the economy gradually reopens.
The Chancellor called on the people of Yorkshire to get behind their high streets today (20 June) as he met business owners who are opening their doors for the first time in more than two months.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak said getting the public back out shopping safely would be crucial in kick-starting the region’s economy and urged locals to support retailers in their area.
During a visit to Northallerton High Street he saw first-hand how local businesses, including department store Barkers and the local florist, and cycle shop, have put measures in place to protect customers and staff. He also heard about the many challenges they had faced and how the government’s package of support has helped them during the outbreak.
In the Yorkshire and Humber region, the government’s job retention scheme has protected more than 600,000 jobs, while nearly 100,000 businesses have received more than £1bn in grants to help weather the crisis.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak said:
Our local high streets are part of the fabric of British life. They employ thousands of people and pump billions of pounds into our economy, which is why it’s so important during these tough times that we show them our support.
It’s going to take a national effort to help the economy recover from the virus. So, I urge people across Yorkshire and the rest of the country to back local business and shop safely.
There are 640 high streets across Yorkshire and the Humber. Together, the non-essential retail sector employs 1.3 million people and provides £46.6 billion to the UK economy every year, and the retail sector overall employs more people than any other sector.
Guy Barker, Director of Barkers Northallerton said:
A vibrant local high street is at the heart of every community, so we’re delighted to be able to welcome customers again and see Northallerton come back to life. This wouldn’t have been possible without the furlough scheme, which has been a lifeline for our business.