OLDHAM MPs Jim McMahon and Debbie Abrahams held an online support session for more than fifty local businesses to offer help and advice during the coronavirus pandemic.
The panel was made up of the MPs alongside experts from the Business Growth Hub Darren Flannery and Phil Hargreaves, Oldham Council’s Deputy Chief-Executive Helen Lockwood and Chartered Accountant and managing partner of Brandsons Accountants John Townsend.
So popular was the event that it had to be extended to allow more time to answer questions from pubs, manufacturing companies, independent shops, digital businesses, solicitors and marketing agencies.
Oldham West and Royton MP Jim McMahon said: “I really enjoyed co-hosting this virtual event with Debbie and I’m really grateful to our panel of experts who gave up their time to talk to Oldham based businesses about the support available at the minute.
“It’s really useful for me and Debbie to know about the issues that pop-up with government schemes at the minute, so we can feed that back where we can and get things changed.
“Thanks to our panel and thanks to all the businesses who came and joined us whether it was to ask or question or just listen to the answers. I hope it was as useful for you as I found it.”
Debbie Abrahams, MP for Oldham East and Saddleworth, said: “Like Jim, I found the seminar a really useful way to add to my understanding of the issues that business owners are facing during.
“Over the last few weeks much of my case work has focused on supporting these businesses and lobbying the Government on the gaps in funding support that still exist.
“It was disappointing to hear that large businesses are still delaying paying their suppliers promptly, causing real difficulties with cash flow. I will continue to put pressure on the Government about this.
“Small and medium sized businesses are the backbone of our economy and we, as politicians, must do all we can to help them survive this pandemic.
“How we support them now will determine the rate at which we can re-build our economy as we gradually emerge from this total lockdown.”