Seven-day trading in the Shire of Narrogin has been officially approved by Commerce Minister John-Quigley. Effective as of last Friday, all businesses in the Shire of Narrogin, including Coles, are allowed to open until 9pm on weekdays and from 11am-5pm on Sundays and public holidays. General retail shops including Coles must remain closed on Christmas Day, Good Friday and Anzac Day. The Shire of Narrogin council backed the changes at a council meeting in late November, when councillors voted five to three in favour of extending retail trading hours after heated debate. At the time, Narrogin Fresh owner Alan Yang said he feared seven-day trading could spell the end of his business. However, this week, speaking after the changes were officially gazetted by the State Government, Shire president Leigh Ballard said the feedback he had received had been mostly positive. “I think there’s more positives than negatives, and that’s why it went through council,” Cr Ballard said. “The feedback I’ve had from people about it has been fantastic.” Cr Ballard said he believed the new trading hours would make shopping more convenient for everyone, but especially those who lived out of town and those who worked late, because it gave them an extra day to be able to get in and do their shopping. “For anyone who works Monday-Friday or Saturday, Thursday night is the only time they can do their shopping,” he said. “But now everyone will be able to comfortably get there after work or on a Sunday.” He predicted it would also boost the tourist trade in town on weekends. “When people see vehicles in town they’re going to stop to see what’s going on,” he said. “When you drive through on a Sunday and there’s no one around, they just keep on going. “They’ll be more inclined to stop to see what’s open now. “The tourist trade can now come through Narrogin knowing that they can do a shop on the way through.” In regard to local businesses which were opposed to seven-day trading, Cr Ballard said he hoped it would not have a negative impact on their businesses in the long run. “The businesses who put up the most resistance to it — it may negatively impact them, but it could also increase their business, with more people coming to town,” he said. He did not expect Coles to switch to Sunday trading immediately because it would have to make adjustments, such as roster changes. He stressed that the new trading rules were designed to give businesses in town more options and that no one was being forced to open during those hours. “It’s up to individual businesses if they want to open or not, but long term, I believe it will benefit them,” he said.