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Royal Wootton Bassett chamber of commerce dissolved in face of falling membership

Royal Wootton Bassett chamber of commerce has been dissolved in the face of falling membership.

The 66-year-old business organisation folded after membership declined to 27 members, with eight former members choosing not to renew their membership in recent weeks.

Until recently the chamber had continued to proactively campaign on behalf of its members. Its letter to MP James Gray to push for help for businesses, including emergency grants, a reduction in VAT from 20 per cent to five per cent, and lower taxes on energy was reported by BBC Wiltshire.

Former president Roz Paton said: “With the difficult Covid years in 2020/2021 and the current demanding financial situation businesses and traders are facing, Chamber membership renewals have declined.”

The committee voted to dissolve the chamber ahead of its financial year end in December, in order to refund existing members’ fees. Any surplus will be donated to the Mayor’s Charity to ensure proceeds benefit the town.

The president’s chain of office has been given to town crier Owen Collier for safekeeping in the town museum.