Published: 08:30, 03 July 2020
A campaign to give the hospitality industry in the county a much needed boost has been launched.
The initiative aims to help businesses as they come out of lockdown, focusing on the county’s food and drink sector.
The county-wide appeal and marketing campaign will run from now until December to support local independent traders.
It has been supported by donations from private individuals with match-funding from Kent County Council.
A spokesperson for the campaign said: "Supporting local businesses has never been more important, indeed more crucial, for the continued survival of Kent’s renowned and ever-exciting hospitality industry.
"By joining up to Produced in Kent and Visit Kent’s project, caring customers will not only be providing financial help to struggling food and drink venues, but also showing them that they are a staple of the community. That without them, the community wouldn’t be the same.
"Now more than ever, these enterprises are deserving of celebration as they strive to accommodate the demands of our changing times. Balancing stringent health and safety measures with customers’ enjoyment will, undoubtedly, prove to be challenging, but with the help of loyal patrons, they are guaranteed to rise to the occasion."
Support Your Local will encourage customers to "show their love" for their favourite Kent food and drink businesses.
Those wishing to support the campaign can make a 'caring customer pledge' to local restaurants, pubs, cafés and hotels when they open.
In doing so, patrons will be pledging their commitment to 'respect, protect and enjoy' establishments as each one adapts to post-lockdown circumstances.
Those taking part can display the #CaringCustomer badge on their social media and are actively encouraged to share their experiences on social media and leave online reviews, using the hashtag.
Further details about taking part in the 'caring customer' pledge, as well as an interactive map showing local suppliers can be found on the HelpKentBuyLocal.co.uk.
More by this authorChris Britcher
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