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Plans progressing ‘at pace’ to reopen MEA’s hospitality sector

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Plans to re-open Mid and East Antrim’s hotels, restaurants, cafés and bars are progressing “at pace”, said the Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor Peter Johnston.

Councillor Johnston said that go ahead by the NI Executive for hospitality businesses to re-open almost three weeks earlier than planned had greatly accelerated preparations by venues across the Borough.

“The local hospitality sector has shown incredible patience, determination and resilience throughout what have undoubtedly been their most challenging months ever on record,” he said.

“This earlier re-opening date has brought about a much-needed boost for the industry, greatly accelerating the huge amount of planning and effort among hotels, restaurants, cafés and bars to ensure they are ready to welcome customers through their doors from 3 July.

“Together with my Elected Member and Council Officer colleagues, I have witnessed first-hand the endless hours of hard work that proprietors and their staff teams have invested – and indeed will continue to invest in the coming weeks – in ensuring that their venues are safe and comply fully with strict government guidelines around re-opening.

“I have every confidence that the industry will be ready, enabling our local citizens and thousands of visitors anticipated to travel to Mid and East Antrim this summer to enjoy the amazing hospitality for which our Borough is so renowned.”

Caravan parks, camping sites and self-catering tourist accommodation is set to reopen from 26 June.

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council recently announced the launch of a new ‘MEA Hospitality and Tourism Recovery Task Group’, which is already working collaboratively to deliver a recovery plan to restore and sustain growth in the industry locally.

The Mayor continued: “The lockdown period has served to remind us just how greatly our local hospitality industry is valued and how much every restaurant, café, bar and accommodation provider – no matter how large or small – contributes to the local economy, lifestyle and culture in Mid and East Antrim.

“As such, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council remains committed to doing everything we possibly can to assist them in their preparations for re-opening and support them in their recovery in the months to come.”

To find out more about Task Group’s #RediscoverMEA campaign, please see Council’s social media channels.

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