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Brexit , Beer and Bounce Back

We continue through lockdown and whilst there remains daily pressure to ease restrictions there is an equal and opposite force urging caution particularly with regard to our schools. 

Job losses are headlined, almost daily particularly so in the aviation sector. One comforting aspect appears to be that the current crisis has apparently spawned job creation within the BBC as whereas once we had a Political Editor we now also have a Political Correspondent, an Assistant Political Editor and an assistant, special and Covid Political Correspondent. 

You have to wonder what Katie Adler in Brussels does with her days now that she no longer appears daily talking us through the European view of Brexit. She is still there probably stuck in lockdown working her way through the full catalogue of Belgian beers. 

'Linked in' activity has apparently gone very quiet. There are still people out there who want to tell us how to come out of lockdown with both fists flailing. Not sure how that works. 

Teams and Zoom are daily staples. Top half grooming and dress is all that is required to go to work. Dogs are perennial intruders on meetings and difficult issues can be avoided by a malfunctioning WiFi. 

In amongst all this there are the charities that are reaching out to the elderly and the vulnerable. Individuals who are performing heroic acts in keeping neighbours afloat and do so with no thought of reward or recognition. 

At the Chamber we continue to concentrate on our local business community. We have been supporting businesses in securing grants, furloughing staff and obtaining vital loans. This work continues. 

Additional grants are becoming available, furloughing staff has been extended and the Bounce Back Loan Scheme represents an incredible opportunity to cover medium term cash flow needs at very little or even no cost. 

We can provide free guidance on all these aspects and have the facility to work closely with businesses as we navigate these difficult times. 

The coming weeks will hopefully see us emerge from lockdown and the reinstatement of business activities, admittedly in a different way, will hopefully see local business begin its long road to recovery. 

If you are still unsure what is available out there or you just need a sounding board to consider your options then get in touch. Personally, I think Katie Adler has got the right idea. There must be around 1000 Belgian beers and she probably deserves this vital role after the daily turmoil she suffered last year. 

Once we are out of all this I know where I will be headed, passport in hand. 

Richard Weilding