203Small businesses are being invited to a special event in Durham in the run up to this year’s Small Business Saturday.

Ahead of the national campaign day to promote small businesses on December 5, the Small Business Saturday tour bus will be coming to County Hall, Durham on Friday, 6 November. Small businesses in County Durham are being invited along to the event, between 12pm and 3pm, to find out more about the campaign, meet other business owners and hear about the help and support on offer from Durham County Council.

As well as the council’s Community Economic Development team, who can help small retail businesses access funding to improve premises and for training opportunities, businesses will also be able to meet a range of other organisations which can support their firm. Representatives from across the council’s business related services will also be on hand to answer questions on such topics as business rates, apprenticeships, supplier opportunities, planning, and IT and internet connectivity.

The council’s ongoing support of Small Business Saturday will include various events on and around the day with further information available at www.durham.gov.uk/sbsdurham.

This will include the return of free parking at all council-run car parks after 9am on December 5 to encourage people to visit the small businesses in their area and support their local high street.

Cllr Neil Foster, Durham County Council’s Cabinet member for economic regeneration, said: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of the county’s economy and it’s vital that the council continue to help them to thrive. With our ongoing support of Small Business Saturday we’re aiming to not only ensure help is available to the businesses themselves but to make sure that residents across the county know about the amazing local businesses on their doorstep.”

Small businesses who would like attend can book their place by contacting the Community Economic Development Team on CED@durham.gov.uk or 03000 266967.