This is a national campaign to encourage everyone to back their neighbourhood's small companies.
Businesses across the borough are already taking part by staging events or promoting the day in other ways. These include a Victorian Christmas in Hamlet Court Road from 2pm, special offers being launched in 25 businesses in Leigh, on-the-day discounts at Boutique 69 in Southend High Street, and a free pot of tea with any slice of cake at Gleneagles Guest House, Southend.
Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is playing its part to boost Small Business Saturday too, by offering all day free car parking on Saturday 7th December in the following car parks:
- Ilfracombe Avenue
- North Rd
- Hamlet Court Road
- Elm Rd
- North Street
- Ceylon Road
- Thorpe Bay Broadway
The Council's Executive Councillor for Public Protection, Waste and Transport, Councillor Tony Cox said: "Small Business Saturday is a key event, so we are supporting it with this free parking opportunity to attract even more people to enjoy all the perks and proximity of our local firms."
Deputy Leader, Councillor John Lamb said: "Southend has many vibrant small businesses helping maintain and improve the borough's prosperity and giving many benefits, so it is vital to make the most of these and support this national Small Business Saturday campaign. A similar drive in America last year generated sales worth an estimated £5.5 billion.
"We hope as many small Southend firms as possible - whether family businesses, local shops, online businesses, accountants, wholesalers or small manufacturers - will get involved. Small Business Saturday is a great way to further promote the "shop local" message to help Southend's small businesses. However it is important to point out that this is not just about retail.
"There are many service, manufacturing, supply and creative businesses which will be boosted by everyone trying to buy locally on Saturday 7th December and beyond. If you don't "shop local" now, you could risk permanently losing the chance to do so in future."
For more information on how businesses can get involved and how the community can help, please visit www.businessonsea.co.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org.