Small Business Saturday takes place this weekend

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Communities are being encouraged to head out and support their local small businesses in the run-up to Christmas.

Small Business Saturday, a national event to celebrate the contribution made by small business owners, takes place this weekend.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), a supporter of the campaign, has revealed that more than £600 million was spent with smaller ventures on Small Business Saturday last year.

This, it said, was more than £100 million up on the figure recorded 12 months earlier.

As a result, the FSB is keen to see a similarly strong performance again in 2016.

The organisation believes this is very important, as for every £1 spent with a small or medium-sized enterprise, 63p is spent again in the local area.

By contrast, the figure is just 40p for every £1 spent with a larger company or chain.

Mike Cherry, national chairman of the FSB, commented: "As we approach Christmas, now is the time for all of us to go out and celebrate our local businesses.

"Small firms make a big difference to their community and the life of the nation, with many going above and beyond to help their small business neighbours and local start-ups.

Mr Cherry said he hopes even more people will turn out to mark Small Business Saturday this year and recognise the small business community's diversity and vibrancy.

He went on to state that this is the perfect time to see what local SMEs offer the whole year round.

"Whether you’re shopping, buying services or products, choosing where to go for a meal, or building a website, hard-working, innovative small businesses in the UK are the first place you should look," Mr Cherry added.