IT APPEARS that two lessons can be learned from the sad demise of Woodheads.
Firstly, businesses need to pass on enough of their costs to their customers in order to survive.
Secondly, customers need to use local businesses, or we will find ourselves at the mercy of national chains who are able to raise prices at will and even leave the town entirely if they so decide. This is not an easy message for people on a modest income who are struggling in the current economic climate.
The country as a whole needs to do more to reduce inequality of wealth and to prepare for even harder times ahead as the prices of oil – and consequently food and other goods – continue to rise. But if you look around, you will find that many prices are actually no more in local shops than they are in the supermarkets.
Fruit and vegetables in particular are generally cheaper in the market and independent greengrocers.
And those who buy everything in local shops do our economy and fellow-citizens a real service.