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Cornwall's tourism sector faces 'three winter seasons' in a row

Cornwall's tourism sector faces 'three winter seasons' in a row

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 10:57am 30th July 2020. (Updated at 11:00am 30th July 2020)

There is a warning that tourism and hospitality business in Cornwall are essentially facing three winter seasons in a row.

It is feared that many will struggle going from the winter, into a shorter and scaled back summer season, and into another winter.

The sector is now trying to bounce back from the impact of the Covid-19 crisis and lockdown.

Industry leaders are calling for more support going forward to help secure the future of local businesses.

It comes after Keir Starmer paid a visit to Falmouth on Wednesday afternoon, in his first trip to the south west since taking over as leader of the Labour Party.

He heard from businesses in the town as he calls for more targeted support going forward.

The Falmouth Business Improvement District (BID) says lobbying is currently underway.

"For a lot of the seasonal businesses that 'three winters' is a real concern.

We've obviously got a short season at the moment and two winters, so an increase in funding and support is very much needed.

"There's a lot of pressure and a lots of coordinated lobbying that is going on at the moment.

"Jobs is going to be one of the key concerns for Cornwall moving forward, obviously when we come out of the furlough environment towards October there are significant plans being put in place to support the county.

"A lot of jobs in Cornwall are bound up in hospitality and have a strong element of seasonality, so we know that is going to be a concern for the county and for the businesses."

Richard Wilcox, Falmouth BID

Sir Keir Starmer with Harry James Mills We Sup Falmouth Sir Keir Starmer with Harry James Mills WeSup Falmouth

“I am really worried about the impact on tourism businesses, particularly here in Cornwall and the South West.

"The research we have shown shows that where you have got towns and areas with a high percentage of people in tourism the claimant rate has gone up dramatically in the last few weeks, that is a real cause for concern.

“What local businesses have been telling me is that the short season, social distancing is really having an impact.

"They want a bit more support for the rest of the season to help them survive this year so that they can be here this time next year and not go under.”

Sir Keir Starmer, Labour Party leader