Sunderland businesses back the new campaign to ‘Keep the North East Open'

The Stack Seaburn and Woofs N Scruffs have both backed the ‘Keep the North East Open’ campaign which has been launched today.

Friday, 25th June 2021, 3:27 pm

The campaign, which launched today (Thursday, June 24), comes off the back of research carried out by the region’s seven local authorities that cover Sunderland, County Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, North Tyneside, Northumberland, and South Tyneside – known as the LA7.

The research, conducted at the beginning of June, looks into how people within the North East are feeling about Covid, with 75 percent agreeing that even with restrictions relaxing over recent weeks, they don’t want to rush into doing things.

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Stack Seaburn Woofs N Scruffs owners Mark (left) and David Potts-Brown are hoping to see an end to restrictions in July.
Stack Seaburn Woofs N Scruffs owners Mark (left) and David Potts-Brown are hoping to see an end to restrictions in July.

Gemma Dishman, the Marketing and Special Project Manager at STACK Seaburn says that people’s willingness to still follow restrictions to support local businesses is a huge confidence boost, especially for the badly hit hospitality industry.

She said: “It’s really great to hear that the North East are ready and wanting to come back and visit all local businesses, I think the hospitality industry have gone above and beyond over the past few months to make sure that customers feel safe.

"We did our own survey recently and nine out of 10 people said they felt safe visiting our venue and would recommend them to somebody else and that we’d had a positive impact in Sunderland.”

Association of Directors of Public Health for County Durham, Amanda Healey, has urged businesses to get behind the campaign to ensure that they can stay open.

He commented: “I think everybody has had enough, it has affected everybody’s mental health and I think the North East has been massively affected.

"The chop and changing all the time, the such short notice for some of the restrictions but we hope that this is the last hurdle.

"It’s been a roller coaster here at the STACK Seaburn, we were set to open in May but that was delayed and then we haven’t really been open properly since then.

"We just want to get back to normal and fingers crossed lets hope we do in the middle of July.”

From left: STACK Seaburn Marketing and Special Project Manager Gemma Dishman, Woofs N Scruffs co-owner Mark Potts-Brown, Association of Directors of Public Health for County Durham Amanda Healey and Woofs N Scruffs co-owner David Potts-Brown.

It comes after the Echo launched out Support Local campaign, aimed at encouraging people to use their local shops and services affected by the coronavirus lockdowns since March 2020.

Amanda Healy, the Chair of the Association of Directors of Public Health North East and Director of Public Health for County Durham, has revealed why the LA7 have decided to launch the ‘Keep the North East Open’ campaign.

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She added: “It is based on research that has been carried out across the seven local authorities and it was really just about trying to understand where people are at currently in terms of the restrictions.

The STACK Seaburn Marketing and Special Project Manager, Gemma Dishman, commented it is a huge confidence boost that people think it is important to follow restrictions to keep local businesses open.

"For businesses, I think what was a really important find was that 90 percent of people really wanted to keep following the restrictions to support local businesses, to keep them and the local economy safe.

"The campaign is very much about businesses urging people to do their bit.”

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