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Empty city centre shops filling up with new businesses says Wakefield Council

Date:23rd July 2012.
Claire Harper, 38, of Kirkburton, Huddersfield, who has launched a children's clothing company called Indiacoco, named after her two daughters.

Date:23rd July 2012. Claire Harper, 38, of Kirkburton, Huddersfield, who has launched a children's clothing company called Indiacoco, named after her two daughters.

The number of empty city centre shops has fallen after the council started offering £2,000 grants to encourage businesses to move in.

Wakefield Council said the number of vacant units had fallen by 15 per cent since it launched the Small Business Grant Scheme last February.

Ninety of the city centre’s estimated 450 shop units were vacant but that number has fallen to 63.

Denise Jeffery, deputy leader of Wakefield Council and its cabinet member for economic growth and skills, said: “We are thrilled at these figures which show the significant impact of this vital business grant and the boost to the economy this provides.

“We continue to support local businesses and are constantly working to ensure they continue to thrive in these tough economic times.”

Claire Harper, founder of kids clothing retailer IndiaCoco, took one of the loans to move into a shop on Wood Street.

She said: “The business grant scheme has been a fantastic support to help launch our retail brand and allowed us to make our first store operational and ready for trading in a short space of time.”

The Small Business Grant Scheme will remain open until September 30.

Anyone interested in applying should contact Andrew Woodhead, city centre manager for Wakefield Council, on 01924 304962.

 

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