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Local businesses share the effects of Wales' firebreak lockdown: TL Systems

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Over a week after Wales' Firebreak lockdown came to an end, we spoke to local business owners about its impact on their business, as well previous lockdowns and the pandemic as a whole.

Dave Elliot is the owner of TL Systems on Holton Road in Barry and is also the chair of the Holton Road Traders Association.

Despite IT being an essential part of everyone's lives, the store wasn't deemed an essential business, so remained shut during the firebreak lockdown.

Despite this, the business was able to remain open said Dave: "We remained behind closed doors and continued our digital marketing & repair services, but our retail shop was forced to close."

"The lockdown limited trading does have a drastic effect on businesses, footfall is completely removed and even with an online shop – you see sales plummet."

As well as running TL Systems, Dave also chairs the Holton Road Traders Association, which he says is good for the shopping area, with traders having a great relationship.

"There’s a friendly alliance between everyone and people do genuinely want to see other succeed."

"Shoppers have been getting on board the shop local message and it’s so fantastic to see more people come into the town centre – rather than shop at large retailers/supermarkets. We couldn’t survive without the community. We are truly grateful for their support."

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Despite Wales' firebreak lockdown coming to an end, Dave has shared concerns that things aren't as they were prior to the lockdown.

Dave said "Footfall isn’t the same – which it won’t be, but we’d love for the community to see that your local business really are trying extremely hard to ensure their business is a safe place to shop."

"Traders are doing all they can to protect their staff and customers – probably more so than the busier, typical shopping centres and supermarkets."

When asked about what businesses need to thrive in 2020, Dave told Bro Radio that fairer financial support is needed for all businesses.

"The financial support isn’t fair across the board – as it’s based on rates. Everyone has been affected by the pandemic and businesses are taking huge losses."

"We do believe that the IT sector should be added to the essential businesses list. We’ve approached the Welsh Government regarding this also."

You can find out more about TL Systems via www.tlsystems.co.uk

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