Swindon & Wiltshire Business News

MP to establish High Street Board to kick-start recovery in Chippenham

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MP Michelle Donelan is to establish a High Street Board to kick-start the post-pandemic economic recovery in Chippenham.

The initiative follows meetings between the MP and business owners.

The board will create a strategic vision for the high street and look at opportunities available – including an application to the much-vaunted Levelling UP Fund.

Last Friday (July 9) the Federation of Small Businesses held a roundtable with Michelle and Paul Scully, the minister for business.

Small business owners had the opportunity to raise their current challenges and to discuss what solutions may be possible for the future.

Issues discussed ranged from the impact of the pandemic to government support packages and growth opportunities for the future. 

Ruth Lambert, local development manager for the FSB, said: “A key objective of FSB is to give a voice to local small businesses, so it is fantastic that Michelle Donelan MP was so keen to hold this event.

"It was a great example of how the FSB works with politicians on behalf of businesses and it was a brilliant opportunity for all concerned to understand where the priorities of our local small business community lie as we move out of the restrictions they have been facing for so long.“

Michelle Donelan said: "I am always keen to meet with the businesses in my constituency and hear about the challenges they face and the ambitions they have.

"The coming years are enormously important in determining how we build back better, and I firmly believe that our local businesses are key to our economic success.

"I am grateful to the business leaders who gave their time to meet with me and I intend to use everything they told me to continue being an effective voice for local business.”

Paul Scully MP said: “Small and medium sized businesses are the backbone of our national economy and I am aware that Wiltshire’s local economy is heavily reliant on their success.

"I was really encouraged to hear the many success stories of Wiltshire businesses and I want to thank Michelle Donelan MP and the FSB for inviting me to be part of this valuable and informative discussion.”

On July 30 Michelle will be hosting a further event to support local businesses in hiring local young people and is inviting all businesses in the Chippenham constituency to an introductory session on Kickstart, which offers businesses a fully funded opportunity to provide employment to local 16-24 year olds.

Business owners who wish to attend need to register in advance at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.