MP laments loss of business – letter to the editor

March 10, 2024 BY

Heart and sole: Kristian Wenckowski closed down Colliers Shoes recently. Photo: FILE

Dear Editor

I WRITE to acknowledge the great work of small businesses across Northern Victoria and to make special mention of Colliers Shoes in Bendigo.

After 94 years in business at the same site on the corner of Hargreaves Mall and Mitchell Street, the business has now closed.

I especially want to thank Kristian Wenckowski, who has owned the shop for 24 years with his wife, for their commitment to Bendigo and service to the local community. I also want to acknowledge Marita, for her professionalism and friendly service as store manager over the last 35 years.

The store has been on the corner since 1930, making it one of the longest running retailers in Bendigo.

I cannot remember back to1930, but I can remember taking my kids to sit up on the platform inside the store to have their shoes properly fitted.

Small businesses make up 98 per cent of all businesses in Victoria.

Twenty-six per cent of these are in regional Victoria and provide the majority of jobs in our regional cities.

Across Victoria small businesses are the engine room of our economy. They provide goods and services and offer jobs for people of all ages, backgrounds, skills and abilities.

To all those in small business who get up every day to supply goods and services, who work hard to provide local jobs and fill the gaps when there are staff shortages, who take a deep breath when they open their bills, and search for ways to save money so they can pay their taxes and still make ends meet, thank you.

We wish you every success and hope that your business will leave a legacy, like Colliers in Bendigo.

Yours sincerely,

Gaelle Broad

The Nationals Member for Northern Victoria