TODAY the Advertiser launches a campaign to support local businesses to help them recover from the impact of the coronavirus lockdown as more firms reopen.

Our Love Local Business campaign has been created to encourage our readers to back the traders of the the town by spending their money with them.

It comes as hairdressers and pubs reopened on Saturday, after four months of being closed. Being unable to work during that time was tough both mentally and economically for many firms. For those that have been able to remain open during the lockdown, many have seen a significant loss in income and a drop in footfall.

The next few months will be a crucial time for local businesses as they try to recover from the impact of the lockdown which, for many, has seen them without any income for more than two months.

We are so fortunate in Andover to have so many great local, independent businesses. From indepedent florists, historic bakers, world food experts and a host of incredible restaurants and cafes.

We now need our community to support them now to make sure we don’t lose them. In the coming weeks we will be promoting these businesses in our newspaper, on our website and our social media channels, using the #AndoverTogether hashtag under our Love Local Business campaign. This to help spread the message that they are open and highlight why they are so valuable to this community.

If you are out and about this weekend, I urge all of our readers to show that they love local business by supporting them.

This could be by singing the shop's praises on social media, celebrating them to friends and family or by writing in to us.

From our part, we will be banging the drum loudly and proudly to support local businesses as they enter this next stage after a difficult and unprecedented four months.

Katie French, Editor