Town centres were bustling with shoppers as people came out to support their local businesses for a national campaign.
Small Business Saturday took place for the second time at the weekend.
The national initiative encourages people to visit their local shops on the first Saturday in December. Business owners can sign up to the campaign and get a marketing pack, which suggests putting on special offers during the day.
Rutland County Council supported Small Business Saturday by offering free parking in Oakham and Uppingham from 10am on the day.
Council leader Roger Begy (Con) was delighted with the response. He said: “It was fantastic to see so many people shopping locally and actively supporting Small Business Saturday.
“Independent retailers are so important to the character of Oakham and Uppingham. It makes them different to other high streets. Their individuality of service and product are important in this digital age.
“By continuing to support local businesses in this way we can ensure that Rutland continues to be a happy and prosperous place to live.”
Business in Stamford took to social media to support the campaign. @StMarysBooks wrote: “#SmallBizSatUK great busy day now we ask for customers carry on until the end of the year !! #rarebooks.”
And @jlballinteriors posted: “#SmallBizSatUK #Stamford we must be the finest destination in the UK for #independent #retail and #food!”
South Kesteven District Council also supported Small Business Saturday. And Stamford and Bourne MP Nick Boles (Con) lent his support to the campaign, visiting Stamford retailer Tanya George for a spot of Christmas shopping before heading to a food and drink festival in Grantham.
He said: “We are incredibly lucky at the range and quality of the small businesses we have in Grantham and right across this part of Lincolnshire.
“I think it’s great that the council is doing so much to support them and it’s great there are so many businesses opening up now taking on empty shops and bringing people into the town centre. We want them to be busy and full of people full of Christmas cheer.
“It’s been a really great day. I just think everyone feels better about life when they can see their town thriving.”