Debate on ensuring seaside resorts can respond to any increased demand for holidays in this country, House of Lords, 22 June 2020

The sector has taken one of the biggest financial hits due to the COVID-19 crisis. Gaps in support packages alongside the absence of the seasonal boost the industry usually sees over the summer means the impact will be felt in the weeks and months to come, even as social distancing measures are eased.


Key messages

  • Councils play a key role in the tourism sector. They run tourism attractions, including castles and historic buildings, parks, piers, amusement parks, and destination management organisations.
  • The sector has taken one of the biggest financial hits due to the COVID-19 crisis. Gaps in support packages alongside the absence of the seasonal boost the industry usually sees over the summer means the impact will be felt in the weeks and months to come, even as social distancing measures are eased.

Guidance

  • It is concerning that Government guidance on the practical steps needed to reopen many key facilities, although drafted, has been delayed for several weeks and will not now give the required two weeks planning period that was the absolute minimum for facilities to properly determine their approach. The Government now risks individual facilities making their own well intentioned, but potentially wrong, decisions about the safest way to reopen.
  • Camping and caravan parks are likely to quickly adapt to restrictions and, with carnivals and other local events cancelled, the availability of self-catering units will be higher than usual. However, coastal communities and towns themselves, and the businesses within them, are often small.

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