Credit: Luke Patrick
Salford shop owners fear they face ruin as the cost of soaring energy bills forces them to consider whether they can afford to stay open.
Langworthy Road Drycleaners owner Elizabeth Brown says she is considering closing down or selling the business she had only set up three years ago.
Gas and electric prices are rising to unprecedented levels, and with multiple washing and drying machines going all day, the business has been hit hard with electric bills.
Ms Brown said before October she was coping but since the rise at the start of the month costs have more than doubled.
She said: “From the first of October my electric has gone up from £20.80 to £55. I’m
already thinking of trying to sell the business or having to close.”
Ms Brown talked about surviving on a week-by-week basis and is unaware of what financial help she might receive to help with rising prices.
Mehmet Deniz, who has a barber shop on Langworthy Road, said he worries about the future of his newborn baby and whether he can keep his business going.
Mr Deniz said: “Mentally; it just makes me worry. Am I going to, you know, carry on this way? Is it going to be all right? Do I have to shoot this business at one point?”
Fadi Mans, who runs Fab Barber nearby, said he is also feeling the strain of rising energy prices on his business.
He said: “The whole business scene is changing because we’re not sure if it’s the right time to put prices up here.”
While Mr Mans is trying to absorb the price increase for the time being, Mr Deniz said he felt forced to increase his.
He said: “We had to put prices up as well. You know, that’s the only way you put up with it and cope.” However, this has had a knock-on effect, as he said he had never seen it so quiet.