Unitas Wholesale managing director Darren Goldney has challenged the Chancellor Rishi Sunak and business secretary Alok Sharma to reconsider the potential relaxation of Sunday trading laws in order to protect the future of wholesale customers.
Goldney explained that small independent convenience retailers have provided a vital lifeline to the communities they serve during the lockdown. “They have continued to trade through the most challenging conditions to provide essential support, products and services, all at huge personal risk. They have adapted their businesses, modified their stores and gone the extra mile again and again to ensure their customers, often the most vulnerable in their communities, have the products they need during the crisis.
“These small convenience stores are already competing with the ever-increasing power of the multiples, and benefit enormously from periods of time such as Sunday trading periods. By relaxing Sunday trading laws, even temporarily, small stores will see their footfall and sales reduce which will result in unemployment and even business closure for those stores already struggling with rising staff costs and the demands of the Covid-19 crisis.
He concluded that Unitas recognises the need to stimulate the economy, however, this must be possible without sacrificing this vital channel. I implore the Government to think again and work with us to protect the livelihoods of small independent convenience retailers across the UK.”