Local plumber talks trade growth with Chancellor

Britain's top tradesmen meet Chancellor George Osborne in Downing Street, London.
Britain's top tradesmen meet Chancellor George Osborne in Downing Street, London.
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A Newtownabbey plumber has visited the Treasury to discuss business growth for tradesmen with Chancellor George Osborne.

Raymond McKnight, who operates as Hill View Heating, received the invitation after winning Screwfix’s annual search for ‘Britain’s Top Tradesman.’

Raymond and nine other UK finalists shared their thoughts on how the government can help to keep business booming for the trade’s professionals with the UK Chancellor.

The local man commented: “Last year was a busy year for me and I expect this was the case for many others.

“It was a great honour to be invited to meet with the Chancellor and to talk to him about our thoughts on what might help small businesses to remain successful in 2015 and beyond.

“I know that there have already been some initiatives put in place which have helped us over the last couple of years, but I think there is more which could be done which would make it easier for small businesses to remain successful.”

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said: “It’s been great to welcome some of the finalists of the Britain’s Top Tradesmen competition, run by Screwfix, to Downing Street today.

“Small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy and hearing tradesmen talk positively about the last year, and look ahead to 2015 with optimism, is further evidence that our long-term economic plan is working.

“This government is backing businesses of all sizes and giving them every opportunity to grow and create jobs.

“That’s why we are reducing the burden of business rates, improving access to finance, and have introduced a new Employment Allowance–a £2,000 cash back on jobs for companies across the country.

“But we can always do more, and that’s why I wanted to meet with the Top Tradesmen today–to congratulate them on their success, and to hear what else we can do to back our small businesses.”

CEO of Screwfix Andrew Livingston added: “We talk to our tradesmen on a daily basis, and it’s great to see that business is good for them at the moment. As a key supplier to the trade we welcomed the opportunity to meet the Chancellor, with a group of Britain’s top tradesmen so they could discuss their businesses and provide suggestions on what else could be done.

“Many of our customers are busier than ever right now and it’s important that we work closely with the wider industry and Government to consider new ways to help them maintain this momentum.”

For more information on Screwfix visit www.screwfix.com, call 0500 41 41 41 or mobile-friendly on 03330 112 112.