As more businesses reopen in the city, Armidale Business Chamber president Anthony Fox has encouraged the city to throw its support behind small business.
"I think that businesses have been doing it tough, and we all need to do everything we can to help them to get themselves out of this economic distress that's been caused by COVID-19," Mr Fox said.
When restrictions were introduced by the federal government in March, it meant a lot of businesses had to reduce their services, and others had to close completely.
"Some businesses are better off than others, but there are a lot of small businesses that it's been very tough for and they will need help and assistance and that will come from the state and federal government in different ways," Mr Fox said.
"I think it behoves us all to help them and support them, and within the rules of social distancing to shop and contribute to the Armidale economy."
He said as the restrictions were slowly but surely lifting, people would become more positive, along with small business.
"They still have to observe the social distancing rules, but they're opening the doors, and if you compared it with a few days earlier, there are more shops opening, so I think we're at the beginning of turning the corner."
While the chamber president said it was the shops reopening in the mall, and in the shopping centres, that provided signs of hope for the city.
"I think service business like accountants and lawyers are still operating, but operating behind closed doors.
"There are probably other businesses around town that are continuing to operate, depending on what the business is. If you want to go to Ducats for example, for wood or whatever, then it's still open.
"There are places like that all over the place, stock and station agents are open. So those businesses have been continuing on.
"But it's the small guys who had to close down that are reopening that are the sign of hope," he said.