Visitor economy surveys impact of Omicron – Businesses urged to take part

Visitor economy surveys impact of Omicron – Businesses urged to take part

Visit Lincoln has launched a survey into the effects of the Omicron variant on the visitor economy and are calling on all business leaders and owners who work in the tourism, hospitality, retail and leisure sector to take part in the research to help lobby for ongoing financial support.

The research is being supported by three other leading business organisations, the Federation of Small Businesses, Lincolnshire Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership who all have links into national Government through their networks.

Talking about their latest lobbying work, Charlotte Goy, Chief Executive at Visit Lincoln said it was critical that local insights are fed into Visit England and Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) on the immediate impact that the pandemic is having on the Greater Lincolnshire sector:

“We have to keep government officials, at a local and national level, up to speed about what is impacting business owners and operators on the ground.”

“Clear lines of communication are essential to make sure information gets to the right decision makers. There is lots of talk happening, but data is critical. Data shows an undisputable insight into what businesses need considering the rapid changes they are having to adopt with the move to Plan B.

The survey results will give valuable insight into the current state of the industry in Greater Lincolnshire and how Plan B is impacting on confidence, the bottom line of businesses working within the visitor economy and the revenue they can generate.”

Nicky van der Drift, Chair of the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership (GLLEP) Visitor Economy Board and Chief Executive of International Bomber Command Centre added:

“As a business leader and the Chair of the Visitor Economy board, I urge as many of my network to fill out the short survey as possible. We have the channels available to us to put forward a very clear ask, but it has to be backed up by robust data and insight. Plan B has been instigated, but at the moment we have no indication for how long – as a result, we have to make sure the voice of Greater Lincolnshire’s visitor economy is heard as key decisions are being made.”

Simon Beardsley, Chief Executive, Lincolnshire Chamber of Commerce said:

“Consumer-focused service businesses such as retail, hospitality, leisure and those in the supply chains are most exposed to the new measures namely because they have come during the critical Christmas period, where those businesses are relying on consumer interaction and spend, with most of this vital to sustaining cashflow ahead of those typically quieter months.

“We are therefore urging businesses across the visitor economy sector to take part in this research and share their experiences so we can continue to keep Government officials up to date and further back up the calls for support to alleviate the pressure on those worst effected businesses.”

"We are urging businesses across the visitor economy sector to share their experiences."

Katrina Pierce, Development Manager at the Federation of Small Businesses, said that the impact of the Omicron variant on local businesses is of deep concern but the lack of support is causing more problems:

“Hospitality businesses were the very first to feel the sting of Covid measures when the public was warned to stay away from pubs, bars and restaurants before formal lockdown was imposed, and it was many more days before any word of financial aid was announced. 21 months on and these businesses again find themselves trying to trade amid messages urging the public to think twice, and without a penny of support to help them manage at what should be their busiest time of year.

“We need to get hard data on the impact all this is having so we can escalate the issues to Government and lobby hard for fair and targeted support. I hope as many Lincolnshire businesses as possible will take part in this vital research”.

Businesses are being urged to fill out the survey and share it with their networks. It will stay open until 31st December 2021: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/VisitorEconomyBizSurvey

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