NHBF Business Update Tuesday 14 May 2024

NHBF Member salon celebrating as finalist for prestigious national business award

Material, an NHBF member salon in Bath, Somerset, is ecstatic about being selected as a finalist for Salon of the Year 2, sponsored by L’Oréal Professional Paris, at HJ’s British Hairdressing Business Awards 2024. These awards are regarded as the most prominent business event that represents hairdressing entrepreneurs and success stories. They shine a spotlight on those who are creating a buzz in the hairdressing industry and revolutionising the game for everyone involved. Material has secured a spot in the finals by showcasing its expertise and professionalism, cementing its reputation as an exceptional salon business. They are now preparing to compete for the top honours at the 25th British Hairdressing Business Awards, which will be held on Monday, July 1, 2024, at London’s Park Plaza Westminster Bridge.

UK-wide ban on wet wipes containing plastic to be put into law

The UK Government has announced its plans to introduce new legislation that will ban wet wipes containing plastic, which was confirmed by the Environment Secretary on April 22, 2024. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) aims to introduce this legislation in England before the summer recess, with Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales following by autumn. The plan is to have an aligned approach to ban the use of wet wipes containing plastic in the entire country.

Research shows that wet wipes containing plastic break down over time into microplastics, which can be harmful to human health and disrupt ecosystems. A recent survey discovered an average of 20 wet wipes per 100 meters of beach surveyed across the UK, which highlights the urgent need for action in banning these harmful products.

Read the full statement here

New levelling up powers to fill empty shops across England

New powers for communities to regenerate high streets and fill empty shops will be in force by the summer, the government has announced.

High Street Rental Auctions, a new local authority power to combat high street vacancy, will allow local leaders who know their area best to take control of empty properties blighting their high streets and rent them out to local businesses that want use them.

The new powers will help councils’ level up their high streets and tackle wide-ranging issues stemming from prolonged high street emptiness exacerbated by the pandemic, such as low footfall which leads to struggling businesses, increased unemployment and anti-social behaviour.

Where a high street shop has been empty for over a year, High Street Rental Auctions will allow local leaders to step in and auction off a rental lease for up to five years. Auctions will take place with no reserve price, giving local businesses and community groups the opportunity to occupy space on the high street at a competitive market rate.

Click for full details here.

Low pay commission UK visits 2024

The Low Pay Commission (LPC) is an independent statutory Non-Departmental Public Body set up under the National Minimum Wage Act 1998 to advise the Government on the National Minimum Wage (NMW).

They are on the lookout for companies that might be interested in speaking to the commissioners about the impact of minimum wages on their business.  From 1 April 2024, the minimum has increased to £11.44 for those over 21-year-olds which is nearly a 10% increase from last year.  There are also adjustments for other age groups as shown in the link here.

How will the latest announcement affect your business planning?  How would you respond to the rising NMW?  LPC is also interested in talking to companies that are trying to raise their productivity, to showcase their learning journeys in their communication platforms.  The oral evidence given by the companies will be collated along with the research statistics for LPC to make their yearly recommendations to the government about the minimum wage.

If you would like to speak to the LPC Commissioners and bring up issues pertinent to your sector, please refer to the table of visits below and contact Rosina Robinson from the NHBF.

Visits Schedule

15 to 16 May 2024 (Wales)



12 to 13 June 2024 (Scotland)

North Ayrshire


3 to 4 July 2024 (Northern Ireland)


31 July – 1 August 2024 (Midlands)



Campaigning for you – VAT reform

NHBF continues the dialogue with HM Treasury about VAT reform through a recent letter from Nigel Huddleston MP, Financial Secretary to HM Treasury in response to our proposals both for a reduced rate and for a smoothing mechanism around the threshold.

In particular in response to our report modelling options for tiered rates around the VAT threshold: ‘The Government continues to look at this issue, and I am grateful for your report and the contribution it makes to the debate around possible smoothing mechanisms’.

Article via NHBF. Read full article at NHBF business update Tuesday 14 May 2024