The boss of one of the North West’s biggest attractions is urging the Government not to ease lockdown restrictions next week.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson is due to speak this Sunday about his ‘roadmap’ for relaxing some of the rules on what people can do and which businesses can reopen from Monday, despite the UK this week overtaking Italy as having the highest death rate for people with Covid-19 in Europe and the second highest in the world behind the USA.
As a tourist seaside town which attracted more than 9 million visitors last year, the coronavirus lockdown which was imposed in March has hit Southport particularly hard.
Over 6,500 jobs in Southport depend on tourism with hundreds of restaurants, bars, hotels and other leisure and hospitality venues based here.
Yet despite the financial impact, Southport Pleasurerland boss Norman Wallis is calling for lockdown restrictions to be maintained.
It follows a poll of over 1,300 people on Stand Up For Southport yesterday which saw 79% of people also demanding that the current rules continue to be enforced.
Mr Wallis said: “Our business has been affected quite possibly more than any other in Southport, Sefton or even the region.
“We have not been open properly since last September, unlike all the shops, hotels and restaurants in the town.
“But I for one would urge the Government to keep us locked down.
“If we return to work too soon the consequences will be catastrophic for everyone but if we are here at the other end together then we can rebuild.
“We should stay locked down and be safe. Short term pain will give us all long term gain.
“I want to be open but we must all stay safe.
“Safety – safety – safety.”
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