At the beginning of the month, the fuel shortage caused problems across the County for about 10 days.  Consumer facing businesses (e.g. tourism, hospitality and retail) reported decreased footfall, tradespeople reported a drop in productivity as long periods of time were spent queuing for fuel, and staff shortages were exacerbated for some firms.

Concerns regarding rising costs, supply chain disruption and staff shortages, which have been bubbling away for months, appeared to be become more acute during October, with the significant increase in energy costs at the beginning of the month tipping some firms back into emergency planning mode.

Supply chain disruption has been particularly problematic for the manufacturing and retail sectors.  Longer than normal lead times for goods and parts has led to delays in launching new products and difficulties in fulfilling orders.

Staff shortages have been particularly acute within the health care, social care, construction, distribution, hospitality, and TV and film sectors.

The above issues were highlighted to BBF by local businesses. BBF use this 'on-the-ground' intelligence to inform local business support activity and share it with central Government (BEIS) on a weekly basis to inform national strategy.

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