CENTRAL Devon MP Mel Stride recently visited Ladds of Crediton, a country supplies store specialising in computer services and repairs, country clothing and air rifles.

Ladds is a family-run business, which has been trading since 1994. Its picturesque countryside location, just off the A377 at Downes Mill, adds to the business’s unique charm and draws in returning and new customers alike.

During the visit, Mel met with the owner, Alan Ladd, and a range of areas were discussed, including local rural issues and business trade. 

Mel Stride, MP for Central Devon and Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, said: "It was great to catch-up with Alan. As a local company at the heart of our rural community in Central Devon, it is fantastic to hear business is going well.”

Businesses like Ladds of Crediton are vital to rural economies. In 2020/21, the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs recorded that there were 549,000 businesses registered in rural areas, accounting for 23 per cent of all registered businesses in England.

It was found that businesses registered in rural areas employed 3.6 million people, which accounts for around 13 per cent of all those employed by registered businesses in England.

It was also recorded that there are proportionately far more “small businesses” in rural areas, meaning that it is all the more important that they have the support of local communities. 

Alan Ladd, said: "I am grateful to Mel for taking the time to visit. We have seen some strong growth over the last few years, which we are expecting to continue.”

To find out more about Ladds of Crediton, please visit the website: https://www.ladds.co.uk/ .