INDEPENDENT shop owners have urged small businesses to join forces to reclaim the high street.

Some shop owners have predicted that smaller businesses will survive if they work together by sharing rates, floor space and customers.

Everything Tiles, in West Mersea, has recently relocated to Stanway after negotiating a shop-share with Hunwicks furniture store.

The initiative has been applauded by the Federation of Small Businesses.

Interviews and Pictures in Tuesday's Gazette.