The Harrogate Advertiser would like to invite readers to get involved in our Love Your High Street campaign.
Is there a shopping street in town that you think deserves more attention and support from residents at Christmas time? We would love to hear from you.
In the run-up to Christmas we want to showcase these streets and celebrate everything that makes them special and unique.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01423 707505 to get involved.
We would also like to share your views about why you think it is important to support our local shops. We will collate these to send a clear message to decision makers that our town is ready for real and positive change on our high street.
Also in news: Love Your High Street: Here's why Commercial Street is one of Harrogate's best hidden gems
We will be driving home the message to the Treasury that outdated business rates need urgent reform to lessen the burden on independent traders, and we will be calling for positive action on parking charges and spaces to encourage people to visit our high streets.
We will also be pressuring the Government to review what access high street businesses and shoppers have to cash and digital payments in the face of dwindling bank branches and ATMs.
Also in news: Love Your High Street: The history of Harrogate's charming Commercial Street
According to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), one in five small business owners were considering closing or selling their firm as a result of business rates and bill hikes last year, and 59 per cent of retail businesses said they feel a cash machine is important to their business.
In addition, half of businesses said their nearest free to access cash point is already more than half a mile away from their business.
Small retailers continue to report the lowest confidence level of any industry sector. Four in ten (43 per cent) expect performance will worsen in Q4 of this year. Only one in six believe performance will improve (according to data from FSB’s Small Business Index Q3 survey undertaken in July 2018).