BOURNEMOUTH council is calling for more companies to get involved in Small Business Saturday.

This is a nationwide campaign highlighting the benefits of using small businesses and promoting the importance of shopping locally, taking place on December 2.

The council says in previous years the initiative has been successful in driving additional footfall to Bournemouth’s various trading areas.

Leader of Bournemouth council John Beesley said: "We believe this day in the shopping calendar makes a huge difference to the local economy, creating an awareness and giving a boost to small local retailers and businesses who in turn are providing local shoppers with some great deals in the lead up to Christmas.

"Small businesses enhance Bournemouth, provide great customer service and bring a diverse range of products to our various high streets.

"We are supporting the campaign and encourage local businesses to get involved.

"This may be by offering exclusive discounts on the day, or incentives to seek out and visit local businesses.

"Let’s celebrate the importance of small businesses to Bournemouth, to their customers and to residents and visitors, and let’s really show everybody the benefits of shopping locally."

Kimberley Nuttall from Simone Thomas, hairdressers and hair loss clinics said the event celebrates "the uniqueness and exemplar customer service that independent businesses on the High Street can bring".

Lia Martin from Westbourne Business Association said: "Small independent businesses on the High Street are the backbone of suburban retail business, and bring a uniqueness to the shopping experience.

"Many are owner-managed, and we always endeavour to put the customer first."

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