The life and death of St Albans businesses


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Although St Albans boasted the highest number of businesses being created in 2013, it also suffered more “business deaths” than anywhere else in the county.

Figures released recently by the Office of National Statistics show that this district launched 1,145 of the 8,185 businesses which sprang up across Herts in 2013.

But a death blow was dealt to hundreds of firms in the same year, warns charity the Money Advice Trust.

Of a total 5,800 so-called business deaths, or de-registrations, in the county, 870 of these were based in St Albans.

That figure is substantially higher than Dacorum’s 785 de-registrations, and the 760 business deaths in Hertsmere. Stevenage farewelled the fewest firms with 270 de-registrations, but it also had the lowest number of new businesses created – with just 460 being registered.

Statistics also showed that around one in four new businesses in the county, 23 per cent unfortunately do not survive to celebrate their second anniversary.

Chief executive of the Money Advice Trust, Joanna Elson, said: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of the economy in Herts and across the UK as a whole.”

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She said that many local sole traders and other small businesses were leaving it too late to seek advice.

The Money Advice Trust, which receives about 70 per cent of its income from private sector companies and about 20 per cent from the government, is warning small businesses across Herts to seek free advice if they are struggling to cope with their debts. It offers debt advice service for small business owners and sole traders in the UK through or via its business debtline on 0800 197 6026.