Stores in Rothbury, Northumberland, are to have their business rates reduced by 10% because of a landslide that affected trade.

The landslide, which closed a road that led into the town, resulted in the businesses losing trade over the busy Christmas period.

According to the Valuation Agency Office, reports received from businesses showing “limited sales figures” and the length of time it will take to repair the road led to the reduction.

Northumberland County Council said it had experienced “many difficulties” during the repair work, as the ground continued to move, and estimated it could stay closed until the latter part of 2015. Traders will also have the reduction backdated to Boxing Day last year, when the landslip occurred.

A Valuation Office spokesman said: “We thought it important to give what relief we could as quickly as possible, rather than wait for more trade figures and analyses or await a valuation tribunal and believe this is a fair reduction based upon what information is in our possession.”

Local retailer Sue Hurst of Tully’s of Rothbury welcomed the reduction. “With the main road closed, there is less passing trade through the village so this will be a big help,” she said.