IT’S a sign of the times but Billy Boy Tyres are not going down without a fight...
Trade has gone so flat for tyre dealer Billy Bradley that he’s having to close his Penistone Road business.
But not without a pointed message to Chancellor George Osborne.
Passers-by will have noticed his defiant banner to Osborne, erected as he struggles on to the New Year to supply customers with snow tyres they have ordered.
Then that’s it, he’s bust, and not too happy with the Government.
“Sales are down 48 per-cent on last year,” 58-year-old Billy told The Diary – he’s been known as Billy Boy since he was a small boy.
“We don’t get many Ferraris in here. This is where your ordinary working class people come and I charge rock bottom prices – but people just haven’t got any money.
“I only make £7 a tyre, I’m cheaper than the internet, and I still can’t sell enough to break even.”
Billy began his business in Chapeltown in 1996 but he doesn’t have much hope for the future: “The Government and George Osborne are talking about £50 million for small businesses but I won’t see any of that. I wanted to have my say so I had a poster made – the sign-writer wouldn’t print what I really wanted to say.
“I am old enough to have been through recessions before but I have never seen anything like this.
“I am embittered by it. I have lost money every month since March.”
“I have had people from the Labour Party round here asking if they can take pictures but I said no. I’m no Labour supporter and I’m certainly not Tory. I’m a UKIP man.
“It’s about time our Government starting looking after the working people of this country and not spending £5billion a day to be a member of the EU.”
So what’s next for Billy Boy?
“I have no idea. I’m going to keep going until I have fulfilled the orders for winter tyres. I don’t want to let anyone down.”