Tuesday 26 May 2020

Practical ways to support Gloucestershire’s small businesses during the Coronavirus crisis

Whether it’s purchasing gift vouchers or taking an online class, there are still so many ways to support Gloucestershire’s small and independent businesses through the Coronavirus crisis.

The UK may be in lockdown due to the Coronavirus crisis, but there are still plenty of ways the people of Gloucestershire can continue to support their favourite small businesses.

From local eateries to independent bookshops, SoGlos has rounded up some of the practical things customers can do to help independents through this challenging time – all from the comfort of their homes!

Postpone, don’t cancel your plans

The Coronavirus pandemic may have scuppered plenty of plans for big nights out, but you can continue to support the businesses affected by postponing your celebrations and not cancelling all together – and consider leaving your deposit to help with cashflow, if possible. Swap table reservations or party venue hire for a future date, when we will all have plenty to celebrate, for example.

Cheltenham’s Everyman Theatre is encouraging its customers to swap tickets for future events, wherever possible, with the chance to exchange ticket-values for gift vouchers which can be used anytime until December 2021, giving you plenty to look forward to while in lockdown.

Buy your future self a drink – or dinner

Already planning post-isolation drinks at the pub? Of course you are. Forward-planning pubs and bars have began offering tokens and vouchers for punters to cash in for a tipple or two when restrictions have been lifted.

Celebrate the end of lockdown with a Hillside Brewery tour, with gift vouchers available online, or treat your future self to beers or a glass of prosecco by purchasing redeemable drinks passes from The Outdoor Inn in Cheltenham.

Want to mark a birthday, anniversary or big milestone? Or perhaps just cheer up a friend? You might not be able to reserve a table for two right now, but you can buy online gift vouchers for many of Gloucestershire’s brilliant independent restaurants and small hotels.

The Tudor Farmhouse Hotel is exchanging meals, as well as rooms and experience packages, for monetary donations via Crowdfunder. Customers can take advantage of reduced rates and plan something to look forward to, whether it’s a cocktail making class, a group foraging session, an overnight stay or a complete venue takeover.

Give your loved one the gift of future celebrations and a small business a financial boost.

Get a takeaway

From batch-cooked meals and fresh fruit deliveries to pizza and other traditional takeaway treats, Gloucestershire’s independent food and drink suppliers are committed to keeping the county well-fed during the Coronavirus crisis.

For the very latest, see independent Gloucestershire restaurants offering takeaway services, Gloucestershire independent coffee shops offering takeaways and delivery and, for something a little stronger, Gloucestershire businesses launching beer, wine and gin delivery services.

Order from local suppliers

While ordering takeaway food might be a no brainer, Gloucestershire shoppers can also continue supporting their favourite local stores by placing orders for all kinds of consumer goods.

Encouraging customers to ‘keep calm and carry on gardening’, The Fairview Gardener in Gloucester is operating its own delivery service, keeping green fingers busy with plenty of different seeds and compost.

Meanwhile, bookworms can keep supporting their favourite independent Gloucestershire book shops by shopping online at hive.co.uk – which donates a percentage of your purchase to a bookseller of your choice.

Take a virtual class

Keeping people connected as well as entertained while in isolation, many Gloucestershire businesses have started live-streaming events and classes online. With plenty out there for all ages, little ones can get creative with virtual craft workshops, while grown-ups can unwind with online yoga sessions.

For the very latest, see Gloucestershire businesses hosting virtual entertainment.

Make a donation

Instead of requesting a refund, consider donating the value of cancelled tickets to the venue or event organiser during these challenging times – such as Cheltenham Festivals, for tickets purchased for the cancelled Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2020 and Cheltenham Science Festival 2020.

Some Gloucestershire businesses have also set up donation appeals, including The Barn Theatre in Cirencester’s Save Our Barn appeal.

Shop local

Gloucestershire is brimming with incredible butchers, bakers and artisan food producers. Shop local when stocking up on food, and visit independent chemists for medical supplies.

Follow and engage on socials

Many small and independent businesses may have closed their doors for now, but customers can still catch up with them on social media.

Perfect for those looking for their next quarantine read, Cheltenham book shop The Suffolk Anthology is sharing its current reads and book reviews on its Instagram, while School House Café is keeping its community spirit alive by inviting customers to share their own stories on its socials.

As part of SoGlos’s #InThisTogetherGlos campaign, to spread good news and positivity at this challenging time, we will share some of the fun, joyful photos taken by readers in Gloucestershire on our Coronavirus lockdown diary.

Share your lockdown pictures by using #InThisTogetherGlos on Instagram.

© SoGlos
Monday 30 March 2020

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