Success of Royal Navy veteran and inspirational entrepreneur Susan Bonnar from Lee-on-the-Solent celebrated at special event ahead of Small Business Saturday

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A CREATIVE entrepreneur from Lee-on-the-Solent was among a handpicked number of small businesses invited to a special reception at the House of Lords ahead of Small Business Saturday.

Susan Bonnar, owner and founder of The British Craft House, an online platform for handmade goods, was invited to the event on Monday, to be recognised for her success and achievement as a small business owner.

Hosted by not-for-profit campaign Small Business Saturday, in partnership with its lead supporter American Express, the event celebrated the SmallBiz100 - 100 inspiring small businesses from all over the country.

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The British Craft House was named a SmallBiz100 in 2020 in recognition of its impressive entrepreneurial journey, which has seen it grow rapidly and become an emerging competitor to global brands such as Etsy, Not on the High Street and Amazon Handmade.

Susan Bonnar at the House of Lords Susan Bonnar at the House of Lords
Susan Bonnar at the House of Lords
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Craft platform The British Craft House started by Lee-on-the-Solent Royal Navy v...

Susan, a Royal Navy veteran who started her business in 2019, said: ‘I was thrilled to be included in this list of aspiring businesses. To be invited to the House of Lords to meet the other business owners was a fabulous experience.’

Bringing together entrepreneurs from this year’s SmallBiz100 line-up and those called out in 2020, the guests were treated to afternoon tea overlooking the Thames.

Entrepreneurs from across the country met with Small Business Minister, Paul Scully.

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He said: ‘From the pubs, restaurants and shops that make our high streets tick, to leisure and personal care services – like the hairdresser who saved my post-lockdown blushes last year – small businesses are at the heart of our way of life. I urge everyone to shop safely and back their local businesses on Small Business Saturday.’

The House of Lords event kicked off a week of celebrations ahead of Small Business Saturday, which returns this weekend (December 4) following record-breaking success last year, which saw an estimated £1.1bn spent with small businesses.

Now in its ninth year in the UK, Small Business Saturday encourages consumers to shop local and support businesses in their communities.

Michelle Ovens CBE, director of Small Business Saturday UK, said: ‘Hosting this special event at the House of Lords for amazing businesses like The British Craft House felt like the best way to say a big thank you for their incredible effort and contribution over these past tough couple of years.

‘They can be really proud of everything they’ve achieved, and we hope the afternoon was a positive way to draw 2021 to a close.’

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