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We are absolutely delighted to announce that we have launched a new campaign set to support Woodbridge “to come alive” post-lockdown.

The shopping streets, usually filled with tourists and locals exploring its beautiful independent stores, has been deserted since the coronavirus pandemic shut almost all the shops in March.

But Choose Woodbridge has today launched a crusade – Stay Local, Choose Woodbridge – to encourage locals back into the town as businesses tentatively start to reopen their doors.

Chairman James Lightfoot said: “Woodbridge has always been a vibrant gem of a shopping spot and this is the first time in my life that I’ve looked up and down the high street in the middle of the afternoon and not seen a soul.”

“We want to support our town to come alive again as guidance allows more businesses to re-open and support them as they work hard to ensure their premises are safe for all to visit with social distancing and hygiene a top priority.”

He added: “Every day in lockdown has been a battle for many of the businesses here who have valiantly strived to adapt to meet the needs of the local people.

“Our campaign is designed to support this and protect the future of our wonderful, independent shops and help them to continue to thrive long after this terrible pandemic has passed.”

A portal on the Choose Woodbridge website now advertises the services, opening hours, delivery options and addresses of Woodbridge shops which are providing an online service, are open physically or working remotely as well as a directory of local food shops and takeaway options.

The campaign will now focus on using ur social media channels to explain the benefits of shopping locally over visiting large supermarkets and a survey is being carried out to understand local shopping habits so retailers can support customers better.

Mr Lightfoot said: “Shopping locally boosts the local economy, has a positive effect on local jobs and is good for the environment but post-lockdown it also provides a safer shopping experience.

“We need to get the message across that local high streets like the one in Woodbridge will be lost completely if people do not support them.

“The local community is key to making this town come alive again and our campaign is designed to support this.”