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Mark Hunter MP fights for the future of local newsagents

June 26, 2009 2:54 PM

Mark fights for the future of local newsagents

Mark Hunter MP has pledged to fight for the future of newsagents across the Cheadle constituency.

Mr Hunter's commitment came after it was revealed by the National Federation of Retail Newsagents (NFRN) that traditional independent newsagents are being forced to shut up shop at a rate of more than one every day. Latest figures show that 510 such newsagents were forced to close their doors in the last year, an increase on the 482 newsagents who shut the year before.

Consolidations in the news distribution industry - the businesses that deliver newspapers and magazines - have left most newsagents with no choice over who supplies them. Shop owners fear that the lack of competition will leave them with no alternative supplier and vulnerable to increased costs.

Last week almost 800 newsagents delivered a petition to the Office of Fair Trading demanding urgent action to protect competition in the news distribution industry.

Mark Hunter MP today threw his weight behind the campaign to save Britain's newsagents and said, "Traditional newsagents are the backbone of our community. They deliver a vital service and are a friendly face that many people rely on every day.

"Many people rely on their local newsagents not only to pick up their papers and magazines but also for contact with their local community. Local newsagents are a vital part of the local economy, and having a local newsagent encourages people to use their local shops.

"It is unacceptable that so many newsagents face an uphill struggle to survive. The Government needs to take action to ensure that there competition in the news distribution industry so that newsagents can avoid increased costs and avoid closure. I am therefore happy to pledge my support to newsagents in Cheadle and across the UK."