The BFA have been dedicated to supporting members through the uncertainty of Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic. These have obviously been trying times for many businesses and footwear manufacturers and retailers have faced many challenges, however the British Footwear Association firmly believe the sector is stronger together and have done their utmost to unite this wonderful industry by taking problems directly to the decision makers at Whitehall and fighting for answers and positive results.
CEO Lucy Reece-Raybould is a member of a trade advisory body representing the footwear industry at regular meetings with government and members of the cabinet; in this role she has lobbied tirelessly for an extension to the furlough past April ’21 and further business rates relief until at least June 2021 for our retailers.
Speaking on the BFA’s lobbying work she said: “The footwear sector’s voice through the BFA has been vital. Our manufacturers must get support with extended furlough and the rates relief extension is critical for retailers. But we are also fighting for support those in the forgotten sectors who rely on retail for sales and their business warehouse means they sit above the rates relief threshold.
“I will continue to draw government’s attention to our sector as I passionately believe that UK footwear needs as much support as possible to keep our position as a globally respected and highly revered industry.”
Apart from its continuous work with various government offices, the BFA has also been able to supply members with direct access to various business experts. From customs advice, to Intellectual Property law guidance we are able to support our members with any problems that may have seen arise. We are also now providing quarterly import and export reports to run alongside the monthly retail reports (a sample of which you can see accompanying this article) to keep our members abreast of the latest footwear centred facts and figures.
The BFA continues to grow and we have welcomed 20 new members over the past year including Penelope Chilvers, GH Warner and Schuh who will now be able to access a wealth of information including Brexit and Covid-19 guidance, industry expert support and regular webinars which are just some of the resources that are proving essential and vital for members as we move, hopefully, toward a more positive business horizon.