Amber celebrates Small Business Saturday in Hastings & Rye

Small businesses are the backbone of the Hastings economy, local MP Amber Rudd declared after purchasing some Christmas presents in local stores.

Amber visited Hastings high street and welcomed the enormous contribution small businesses make to the community.

MP for Hastings and Rye & Work and Pensions Secretary, Amber Rudd said:

“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy, boosting job creation and helping us to achieve record levels of employment in the UK. This means we have seen 330,000 more people in work in the South East since 2010, including here in Hastings and Rye.

“Small Business Saturday is a great chance for local business owners to showcase their products and services to the local community and if you’re a jobseeker with a business idea we can help too, by providing financial support and a business mentor”

“I particularly enjoyed spending Small Business Saturday visiting our iconic high streets and supporting the small businesses we have here with my Christmas shopping! It was also great to see our towns come together and hold various fairs to help get all of us into the festive spirit.”

Small Business Saturday promotes the value of small business to local communities as well as the economy – 99 per cent of UK businesses are SMEs – responsible for nearly half of economic output and 60% of private sector employment in the UK.

As part of Small Business Saturday, Amber highlighted the support her Department gives to encourage business start-ups through the New Enterprise Allowance.  Around 120,000 businesses have been launched through the NEA, an average of 45 a day since the scheme was launched in 2011. – helping to create more jobs, and boosting wages.

The New Enterprise Allowance helps jobseekers set up their own small business with Government financial support for up to 6 months, access to a business mentor and the opportunity for a loan of up to £25,000 to help with start-up costs.  In October’s Budget the government extended the NEA fund beyond March 2019, worth £40 million.

This gives small businesses the chance to grow, with businesses across the South East exporting £22 billion abroad so far in 2018.




Notes to editors

  • Amber is pictured at St Michael’s Hospice Christmas Fair


Small Business Saturday is a campaign to promote the value of small business to local communities as well as the economy, reaching millions of businesses and consumers each year. Government has supported this campaign for the past 6 years.

Visit GOV.UK for information on support for small businesses.

For more information about the New Enterprise Allowance visit:

The Department for Business will shortly publish the Business Productivity Review setting out ways to support improving productivity in many of our smaller businesses.