Tourism businesses are being praised for adapting their usual practices in efforts to help residents and workers across the county who are being affected by COVID-19.
Cumbria Tourism is working around the clock to support attractions, accommodation providers and other sector-related businesses as the industry and local communities collectively face their biggest-ever challenge in the face of Coronavirus.
Working with its partners, member businesses and Cumbria County Council, the organisation is also helping accommodation providers adapt their services to assist with the local emergency response.
As Cumbria County Council makes calls for temporary workers to support the delivery of critical care services over the coming weeks, it is working alongside Cumbria Tourism to find cooks and domestic support staff to help the most vulnerable members of local communities.
It’s hoped these calls will bring new opportunities for affected workers in the leisure and tourism sector, as well as the creation of new jobs by supporting services including those dedicated to helping with the co-ordination of providing beds for key workers and patients.
While hotels, hostels, B&Bs and self-catering properties have been told to temporarily shut-down under government social distancing measures, exceptions have been made to ensure help is available for frontline key workers who may need alternative accommodation.
Evidence of collaborative working is also rapidly stemming beyond accommodation providers, with many members of Cumbria Tourism quickly developing alternative services and solutions to adapt to the rapidly-changing environment.
Among them, are Chestnut House in Penrith, which has launched a service to deliver locally sourced food to people in-need from surrounding towns and villages. Nutritious take-home meals for the elderly and most vulnerable residents of the Cartmel area are being cooked up by Simon Rogan, owner of L’Enclume and Rogan & Co, while Carvetii Coffee Roasters at Threlkeld is supporting the future of local coffee shops by donating 10% of online orders in the form of coffee beans to each buyer’s nominated branch.
Skincare business Pure Lakes is donating 50 tins of hand balm to local frontline NHS staff, to help return some much-needed moisture to their skin as a result of being well washed and sanitised. Ulverston-based Gin producer, Shed 1, is also producing hand sanitiser (pictured).
Managing Director of Cumbria Tourism, Gill Haigh, says, “These are just a few amazing examples of how our local businesses are doing whatever they can to help those in need during this incredibly difficult time. Rather than be beaten by this virus, our businesses are adapting and diversifying however they can, not just to stay in business, but to reach out and help people who really need it.
“Both myself and the whole Board at Cumbria Tourism highly commend these efforts, as this is exactly the kind of teamwork and compassion which, when combined, really go to show what a fantastic community of businesses which we have the pleasure of living among and working with.”
Cumbria Tourism is collating information from all over the county about how businesses are helping with the COVID-19 situation and adapting to reach new customers. Stories can be sent to the team, by emailing email@example.com.