‘You’re disadvantaged here without making it harder’

Gail and Gavin Jones Berwick North'Northumberland County Council election count at Willowburn Sports Centre in Alnwick.
Gail and Gavin Jones Berwick North'Northumberland County Council election count at Willowburn Sports Centre in Alnwick.

A Berwick trader has said that business is tough enough already without the complications that an independent Scotland could bring.

Gavin Jones, who, with his wife Gail, runs Jones & Jones, which sells gifts and hampers, wants the status quo to remain and cites currency as his key concern.

“When you run a small business, it’s not always the easiest. Anything that costs money is eating into revenue or raises costs,” he said, adding that any difference in the currencies would lead to additional charges.

He also pointed out that even if Scotland carried on using sterling, that could change in the future.

Gavin went on: “Our business uses local suppliers and we don’t think in terms of the border but in terms of distance.” Essentially, he could end up importing goods from another country and at the mercy of trading laws.

“Taken cumulatively, it’s bad for the economy because there’s increased overheads for the same amount of trade.

“In this area, you don’t have a big population base. You are reliant on tourism or logistics. You are disadvantaged here already without making it harder.”

Gavin, who is also the county councillor for the Berwick North ward, said that initally people in the town were perhaps a little complacent, because the view is that you aren’t English or Scottish, but from Berwick.

“But as we get closer, there’s concerns about business and border crossing and whatever happens at first isn’t necessarily how it will remain.

“Corporation tax may be different and that would affect business and jobs in the town.”