The Minster started her visit in the St Elli Centre where she met the BID’s Chairman Jonathan Armstrong of Emilia May Gift Shop, together with other member of the BID team, the St Elli Centre Manager, Nia Griffith MP and Cllr Meryl Gravell of Carmarthenshire County Council.
After calling in at Wilkinsons, one of the chain stores that is working with independent traders in supporting the BID, the party made its way along Stepney Street where they stopped to see two of the empty shops which are part of the Council‘s Opportunity Street programme to bring the premises back into use – using part of the grant and loan support to Llanelli provided by the Welsh Government.
Nia Griffith MP commented,
“I was very pleased to see the Minister Lesley Griffiths AM here for the Llanelli BID launch, supporting our town centre, but, as she said, there are no simple solutions to adapting to changing shopping habits, and we all need to work in partnership to revive the town centre. That’s why I am very concerned when I hear senior Councillors making disparaging comments about the traders, when they are working very hard, and I feel the Plaid- Independent offer on free parking is paltry – the traders wanted free parking earlier in the day to influence people’s decision about where to shop, not just at the tail end of the afternoon when they are busy with the children.”