ALMOST 40 East Lancashire firms were among those to sign a letter in support of a Conservative-led government.

More than 5,000 small British businesses co-signed the letter, which praised David Cameron and George Osborne and featured in yesterday’s Daily Telegraph newspaper.


But the East Lancashire branch of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) said it was prepared to work with all parties after May 7.

Eight Burnley companies, four from Blackburn, four based in Clitheroe and three in both Colne and Chorley put their names to the letter.

As well as Blackburn’s Abbey Telecom, Accrington’s Lantex Manufacturing, Clitheroe’s Seafood Pub Company and Burnley’s Kenank’s Bar and Grill there was also support from businesses based in Accrington, Barrowford, Waterfoot, Darwen, Haslingden, Roughlee, Hapton, Barnoldswick, Oswaldtwistle, Sabden and Coppull.

In it, they wrote: “This Conservative-led government has been genuinely committed to making sure Britain is open for business.

“They’ve managed to get the economy moving again by tackling the deficit, helping to keep interest rates low and inflation down.

“We’ve been helped by their steps to lower taxes, reduce red tape, simplify employment law and get the banks lending.”

It added that “a change now would be far too risky” and “would undo all the good work of the last five years”.

The FSB is encouraging prospective candidates to show their support for small businesses on social media by using #ibacksmallbusiness.

Gary Lovatt, the organisation’s Lancashire chairman, said: “We welcome the focus all parties are giving to small businesses ahead of the General Election. The UK’s 5.2 million small businesses have been at the forefront of economic recovery, with a record number of start-ups in recent years.

“It is these small businesses which have led the way in creating jobs and driving growth. Given the right environment, they will continue to do so in the future. The fact that this is so widely accepted right across the political spectrum is encouraging.

“As the leading voice of UK small businesses, the FSB has worked hard to spell out what businesses need from a new government in our Business Manifesto and it’s good to see many of our ideas have been taken up.”