AN independent bicycle shop is one of four businesses in the region to be names in the “Small Biz 100,” as the countdown gets underway to Small Business Saturday.

Inspiral Cycles, on Newgate Street, Bishop Auckland is one of 100 small businesses highlighted as being trailblazers by the organisers of the annual event, which takes place across the UK on December 7.

Also in the top 100 are Northallerton’s Earth Unwrapped, a plastic-free shop opening earlier this year, Jam Jar Cinema in Whitley Bay, a volunteer-run cinema showing new and classic releases on a single screen, plus a lounge bar, and Sagetech Machinery in Witton Gilbert, a manufacturer specialising in the design and manufacture of innovative, reliable and safe vertical panel saws.

The Northern Echo:

Earth Unwrapped, Northallerton

Inspiral Cycles was opened by Gary and Fiona Ewing in 2015 to offer high quality bicycle sales, accessories and repairs along with expert advice.

Fiona said: “This is an especially exciting time for us as Inspiral Cycles has grown to capacity in four years, thanks to our customer support. We are now looking forward to extending our current shop space, with more room for extra staff in a new workshop and therefore a quicker turnaround time on cycle repairs.”

In the 100 days running up to Small Business Saturday, the campaign will focus on each of the Small Biz 100, as part of its efforts to celebrate small business success and encourage the nation to “shop local”. Inspiral Cycles will be in the spotlight on September 12, when Gary and Fiona will be celebrating by joining representatives from the other 100 businesses in London.

Director of Small Business Saturday, Michelle Ovens said: “Each year this campaign has grown in support from government, business and communities alike.”

She added: “Small Business Saturday’s increasing popularity means it was harder than ever to choose just 100 of this country’s incredible 5.6 million small businesses to showcase, but we believe those we have chosen are true representatives of the diverse, creative and inspiring heroes at the heart of our communities.”

Now in its seventh year, in 2018, Small Business Saturday saw an estimated £812m spent in small businesses across the UK on the day of the event.