LISA AYNSLEY: Surge in ‘staycations’ offer a real opportunity for our town

Well hopefully by the time you are reading this we will be indeed days-few to re-opening! And I can’t begin to tell you how happy that makes me.

Thursday, 1st April 2021, 12:00 am

We have recently passed the one y ear Covid anniversary and I have to be honest, I found it very emotional.

I could never have predicted a year of my life being forced to close my business, staying away from my loved ones to keep them safe, faces covered, a desolate town centre and both my children not able to attend school.A year where so much has been learned in so many ways and so so much has been lost, a year none of us will ever forget, it still feels surreal, and the world has changed forever.

Keeping it positive though, it has been marvello us to see how the Alnwick businesses have pulled together through this, group chats and emails have never stopped with information sharing, grant funding updates, working together to bring the Kickstarter Apprenticeship Scheme to life and just general camaraderie.

Social m edia can be truly fabulous at times and this week it threw up the anniversary of me taking over the chairmanship of the Alnwick Chamber of Trade.

One of my many ambitions back then was to bring all the stakeholders in the town together and work more as a team.

I can proudly say today, that has certainly been achieved with amazing support from both key stakeholders, The Alnwick Garden and Northumberland Estates, they have really stepped up to help make sure the independent businesses don’t just survive the pandemic but bounce back bigger and better than ever before, and with the predicted surge in “staycations” there is a real opportunity for our town to be the shining star in Northumberland, we have so much to be proud of, great businesses and fabulous people.

Now for many the magical April 12 (I hope you’ve all got your beer gardens booked, I certainly have!) is the end, but for us non-essential retailers, pubs, restaurants, c afes, h airdressers, beauticians and more it is only the beginning, and where the really hard work starts, so please please support your high street.

We quite simply can’t wait to see you!