Christmas shopping will be somewhat different in Tendring this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Just as businesses were gearing up for their busiest time, a second lockdown was announced at the beginning of November.
As part of Tendring Council’s priority to support local businesses, a Facebook page was set up in October and the campaign ‘Shop Safe in Tendring this Christmas’ was launched.
Two virtual shopping events were set up for November 18 and 21 where local businesses could promote their products and services to potential customers, all from the comfort and safety of their own home.
It is hoped the tough national measures will be lifted at the beginning of December, however the council still wants to provide a safe way for residents to reach out to local businesses.
To do so, an innovative Facebook Live event has been organised for Tuesday, December 1, at 6pm.
Local businesses are encouraged to take part in the event by contacting the council ahead of the event to book their slot.
Residents can join the hour-long event to support their local businesses and do their Christmas window shopping whilst avoiding the crowds.
Mary Newton, cabinet member for business and economic growth, said: “We have seen an increase in people wanting to support their local community and shops, but it has been extremely difficult for people to do that as non-essential shops have been closed.
“We hope this live event will help and would love to see as many people as possible join the event to support their towns.
“The event is not there to replace traditional shopping because we would love to see our high streets thriving again, but it just provides an alternative option at a time when it is crucial we avoid bustling crowds of people – and the event fits into our Back to Business agenda.
“There will be lots of different products on offer on the night and it really is a great opportunity to get wrapped up early for Christmas.”
Steve Tattam, from Winyl’s in Manningtree, added: “We have found the loss of our instore events, wine tasting and live music has been the biggest blow to us and our local customers.
“We are looking forward to taking part in the Facebook Live event because it is a great way for the community to come together to support each other, and to browse through gifts and products you wouldn’t normally find.
“We sell an ever-growing selection of vegan wine, beer, vinyl and associated gifts.”
If you are a business based in Tendring and you would like to take part in the event please contact Candice Robinson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To join the event, go to facebook.com/events/297007951487127/