As the weeks under lock down pass; the year advances and the key summer season for UK seasonal traders gets ever closer. The Nation is still however deeply, challenged in a way few if any could have predicted by Covid with its human tragedy ; and financial wreckage laid bare for all to see.
The Coastal seasonal traders are by being part of the Hospitality sector seemingly some of the first in to shutdown; and possibly some of the last out. The timing could not have been worse, following a long winter, and just ahead of the important start of the season, and re opening ....
Despite that, this group of resilient traders are preparing their businesses to re open and try to offer some provision of services in the 2020 season, but the damage has been deep financially, and whilst the grant support has been excellent to some smaller traders ( some will possibly have done better with this than if they traded, in the first part of the season); some are very much losers in all this, as with growing size of the business, often the fixed overheads also rise, meaning many are really hurting.
At least some light at the end of the tunnel might exist, and even if some trade can be had in July and August the season might just throw enough to get many through the coming winter, to hopefully a more settled 2021 season.
Its frightening the effect Covid has had , and it seems very true we will all be living alongside it for a very long while. For hospitality , it will be interesting to see how the industry can adapt , to social distancing; restoring confidence; and policing unruly customers who dont comply to protect those that do, and want to safely use the establishments.
We are certainly in a period of massive change. What however continually impresses me, is despite all this, the spirit of the coastal trader still shines through, certainly glass half full mentality, and its inspiring to see this.
Lets hope their confidence is matched by good numbers of Brits using the coast as it unlocks, and enjoying staycations on our coastal areas.