EAST NEUK PREPARES TO RE-OPEN TO VISITORS - SAFELY

Tue 14 Jul 20

Visit East Neuk (VEN), the local tourism association which promotes one of Scotland’s most popular destinations – the East Neuk of Fife - is seeking to reassure local residents it is ready to welcome visitors back safely. As COVID-19 restrictions ease further and Scottish tourism prepares to potentially reopen from 15th July, Visit East Neuk (VEN) is encouraging businesses to ensure they are ready to receive visitors responsibly. Highlighting the importance of visitors to the local economy, supporting many local businesses and jobs, the group are seeking to reassure local residents that the tourism and retail businesses are working hard to ensure that they can welcome visitors and locals safely and responsibly. In a bid to support the recovery of the local tourism industry, VEN has publicly endorsed a new Visitor Charter created by national tourism organisation, VisitScotland. It offers guidance to encourage safe and responsible travel around the country and is available to tourism businesses through VisitScotland’s website to download, print and display.

As well as communicating the Visitor Charter to local businesses, VEN has also urged attractions, eateries and accommodation providers to sign up to the ‘We’re Good to Go’ scheme. The industry standard and supporting charter means businesses across all sectors of the tourism industry in Scotland can demonstrate that they're adhering to the respective government and public health guidance, and have carried out a COVID-19 risk assessment to check they have the required processes and protocols in place to safeguard their visitors and staff.

Roger Brown, Acting Chair of Visit East Neuk, said: “We know that the lockdown period has been a very difficult time for local businesses and we have been working during that time to share relevant information to help those struggling. With an end in sight to the restrictions affecting these services, businesses are now coming to terms with and preparing for re-opening safely for both visitors, staff and local residents. Visit East Neuk recognises that as lockdown restrictions ease across the world, many local residents will be nervous about visitors from other parts of the UK and abroad returning to the area with the possibility of introducing the Covid-19 virus. Tourism is a vital part of the East Neuk economy, supporting many jobs directly and indirectly. Without our visitors, many businesses which local people as well as visitors depend on would struggle to survive. It is essential therefore that local residents are as assured as they can be that visitors can return to the East Neuk safely.”

One Anstruther business, The Spindrift Guest House, run by Mark and Jen Carmichael-Green added: “‘We’re Good to Go’ is a simple mission statement describing what and how we have applied the safety regulations to the house for our guests” a sentiment echoed by local Councillors Bill Porteous, Linda Holt and John Docherty. Councillor Porteous added, “We welcome the recent announcement of financial incentives to the hospitality and tourism industries which should bring much needed support to our East Neuk businesses.

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