TENBURY MP Harriett Baldwin has offered her support to local businesses as more shops opened.

The MP has been helping hundreds of local companies to access Government schemes aimed at supporting businesses and staff during the Covid crisis.

Figures released by the Government confirm that, across West Worcestershire, 10,500 jobs have been supported by the Job Retention Scheme and 3,900 self-employed people have had claims accepted worth over £11 million.

Rules were relaxed from Monday meaning that more shops are allowed to open and businesses are being encouraged to resume operations whilst observing social distancing rules.

The Government moved swiftly to introduce a range of schemes to help companies to keep staff on the payroll and prevent wide-scale redundancies.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak also introduced measures which help self-employed people with special measures also introduced to help retail and hospitality business and a discretionary grant scheme managed by Wychavon and Malvern Hills District Councils.

“The Government has stepped in with a range of schemes to help businesses and there are thousands of people across West Worcestershire who have been furloughed, awaiting a return to work when conditions allow,” said Mrs Baldwin.

“The furlough and self-employed support were both extended in recent weeks, but we’ll be seeing many more shops opening and conditions relaxing to hopefully kick-start the economy and allow many more people back to work.

“People in West Worcestershire have done a great job sticking to the rules but now it’s time to encourage people to venture out and help to get our local businesses and shops operating as near to normal as possible in these challenging times.

“I’m planning to be out and about showing my support for local traders and I hope people will be encouraged to shop local and show their support too.”