A lobbying scheme that aims to make MPs far more aware of the issues that retailers in the community face has been launched by the Association of Convenience Stores.
The Campaign Champions programme aims to recruit 659 retailers - one for each constituency - to keep in touch with their local MP.
ACS plans to send these volunteers regular updates about key issues and tools including pro-forma letters to make the work easier.
It also hopes to liaise with the Scottish Grocers’ Federation and the Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association to boost the scheme outside England and Wales.
David Rae, ACS chief executive, said the organisation had already established strong links with parliament through its lobbying activities and by encouraging MPs to visit local stores. MPs were already concerned about the survival of c-stores in communities across the country, he added.
“Retailers are often unsure of how to approach their MP to lobby. Campaign Champions enables retailers to place pressure on decision makers and raise the profile of our sector in parliament.”