Tunbridge Wells Together - 19.3.2020

Town Centre Update

We don't have all the answers, but we're asking the questions!
At the risk of stating the obvious, we are experiencing an unprecedented global crisis. What started out as a health scare in a part of China most of us had never heard of has now spread into a global pandemic. Coronavirus isn't just causing a huge health scare, it is now forcing a significant financial crisis as countries around the world go into the lock down. 

The outlook for business is changing daily, as new announcements are made by central government. These announcements are welcome, but they often prompt more questions than answers. The message is clear but the detail is vague. But that is not surprising, as we've never been in this situation before. 

We are in constant contact with representatives from local, regional, and central government. Our aim is to support you, as best we can, with information, advice and support as it becomes available. As soon as we know, we will make sure you know. 

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council is working hard to ensure your businesses have as much support, locally, as they can provide. And we are lobbying them continually to ensure no opportunity to support your business is missed. We are here to support your business through this challenging time. Communication is vital; we will keep you informed of what is happening locally and we will help you promote your business to the residents of Tunbridge Wells.
Ross Feeney
Chief Executive - Tunbridge Wells Together
 Meeting with Greg Clark MP & William Benson
We are meeting with Greg Clark MP and William Benson (Chief Executive of Tunbridge Wells Borough Council) on Friday morning, where we will be feeding back your concerns about the current health crisis and finding out what will be happening to support businesses across the town centre. Please email us with any concerns you have, or any questions you would like us to ask on your behalf. We will circulate a further update after the meeting. 
 Helping You Keep Your Customers Updated
We will be using our social media channels every day to let people know when your businesses are open. Email us each day with your updated opening hours, any special offers and social media accounts and we will promote them for you.
Twitter @rtwtogether @RoyalTWells
Insta @royaltunbridgewellstogether
Keep Up To Date on Whats App
To keep you up to date with the latest developments in this fast-moving crisis, we are setting up a dedicated Whats App group. If you would like to be added email us the mobile number you would like added, with the name of the phone's owner and a short email confirming you give consent for us to add you to the group.
In China, once the Coronavirus became widespread, restaurants and retailers suffered a rapid slowdown as social-distancing measures were implemented. However, demand for contactless sales and delivery methods grew. Below are some ideas that may help your business:
  • Set up a delivery service - If you are a currently a dine-in only restaurant with reduced footfall then think about setting up a delivery service during this period. The restaurant food delivery service has exploded over recent years and people having to self-isolate won't want too many meals of beans on toast. If they can have their favourite restaurant meal delivered to them so much the better. See Uber Eats for more information.
  • Click and collect - If customers are able to come out but don’t wish to dine with others than a click and collect takeaway option could work well and save you delivery fees.
  • Gift voucher schemes – encourage your customers (existing and new) to purchase gift vouchers from you to sped at a later date.
  • Statistics indicate that retailers should plan for at least 40% of their business to come from online sales during the peak of the virus. If you don’t already have an e-commerce site then one idea is to upload images of your stock to your website and then take orders over the phone and dispatch by post. You may want to consider an eBay or Amazon store. Communication with your customer database is key. Let them know how things will be different during this period and how they can keep shopping with you.
Copyright © 2020 Royal Tunbridge Wells Together, All rights reserved.

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