Press Releases

ACS: Bank Closures Highlight Essential Services Provided by Local Shops

ACS has responded to the publication of a new report from consumer group Which? that warns of 60 bank branches closing every month, highlighting the role of convenience stores in continuing to provide banking services for local customers.

The report found that 2,868 branches will have closed between 2015 and the end of 2018, with Scotland, the South East and the North West seeing the most closures per region.

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Treasury Loses Almost £4bn to Illicit Trade in Alcohol and Tobacco

ACS has responded to the publication of HM Revenue and Customs’ report on the prevalence of non-duty paid alcohol and illicit tobacco in the UK, reiterating calls for targeted action at a local level to reduce the impact of the illicit trade on responsible retailers.

According to HM Revenue and Customs, the tobacco tax gap driven by the illicit market in cigarettes and hand-rolling tobacco is estimated to be £2.5 billion in 2016-17. Of this, £1.9 billion was lost in tobacco duties and a further £0.5 billion in VAT.

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ACS Welcomes Safe Car Wash App to Combat Modern Slavery

ACS has welcomed the launch of a new app to help consumers identify car washes that could be exploiting their workers.

The app has been developed by the Clewer Initiative, the Church of England’s campaign against modern slavery, and the Santa Marta Group, the Catholic Church’s anti-slavery project.

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Future National Living Wage Increases Must Not Come at the Expense of Jobs

ACS has called on the Low Pay Commission to ensure that future increases in wage rates do not negatively impact the labour market.  

Figures from the ACS Local Shop Report show that in the last three years, the number of jobs in the convenience sector has fallen from 407,000 in 2015 to 370,000 in 2017 despite the number of stores remaining stable.

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ACS Welcomes Support for New Protection of Shopworkers Bill in Scotland

ACS has welcomed widespread support for a Bill in Scotland creating a new offence designed to protect shopworkers from violence.

Over 90% of respondents to the consultation put forward by Daniel Johnson MSP supported measures to create new offences to deter harassment, abuse and violence against staff triggered by asking customers for proof of age or denying sale of age-restricted products.

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ACS: Retailers Need Clarity on Tobacco Track and Trace Regulations

ACS has called for clarity from HMRC with less than twelve months to go until the introduction of ‘track and trace’ regulations for tobacco products.

The ‘track and trace’ proposals in the EU Revised Tobacco Products Directive, due be introduced in May 2019, will put in place a new method of tracking the sale of legitimate tobacco products through the supply chain. The introduction of ‘track and trace’ will place a number of demands on retailers.

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ACS Welcomes New Government Inquiry on Future of High Streets

ACS has welcomed the launch of a new inquiry led by the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee on the future of UK high streets and town centres.

The inquiry will examine the future role of the high street in contributing to the local economy and the health, cohesion and cultural life of the local community. It will also look at how local areas are planning for the future of their high streets and town centres and creating the conditions to sustain them in the coming years.

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