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Bispham Road Post Office finalist in 'We're Stronger Together' awards for service during Covid-19 pandemic

THE Southport Bispham Road Post Office is a finalist in Community Engagement category at the Post Office's 'We're Stronger Together' Regional awards for the North West and North Wales. The Awards recognise efforts made by postmasters across the Region to keep branches open during Covid-19 pandemic and serving their community. The great work by Postmaster David Hartley who runs Bispham Road Post Office, was highlighted last night by Post Office Chief Executive Nick Read. Postmasters who operate branches in North West and North Wales Region had the opportunity to share their experience of running their branch during the pandemic and hear directly about the Post Office's future growth strategy.

Post Office Area Manager Victoria Patching, said:- "Postmaster David at Bispham Road Post Office has been nominated for our Community Engagement award for going above and beyond for his local community. David has kept his Post Office open entirely during the pandemic, while working tirelessly with the Rotary Club to fund charitable donations. David always puts his community first, he recently wrote to Nick Read asking for help with vulnerable children & providing laptops to help with their education during lockdown. David and Bispham Road Post Office continually go above and beyond for their community."

Nick Read, Chief Executive at the Post Office, said:- "I have heard many inspiring stories of postmasters going the extra mile and I have welcomed the opportunity to hear first-hand how postmasters in the North West and North Wales have fared during the pandemic including Bispham Road. All retailers have been affected and Post Office was no exception. The next few weeks and months will be a critical period as we try and return to a sense of normality. Post Office branches have a vital role to play in supporting their customers and communities, as well as helping small businesses and independent retailers get back on their feet."

Postmasters heard more about 3 areas of their business that could help them recover some of the lost trade as a result of the pandemic; Mails and Parcels, banking; cash withdrawals and deposits, and the return in demand for foreign exchange. Many people rely on easy access to cash. To spend that cash, businesses need to continue to accept it, and be able to conveniently deposit it into their business bank accounts. That 'cash cycle' will play a vital part in our economic recovery from Covid-19. Post Office branches are often the last counter in Town where businesses can deposit a day's takings. Business deposits are growing between 10%  to 20% week on week. For small businesses, being able to get goods out to customers is key. Post Office's 'Drop and Go' parcel service has seen a 70% increase in use month on month. In June 2020 the Post Office reactivated its online foreign exchange service and its branch pre-order operation. Customers planning trips abroad can order over 60 currencies online for next day home delivery or collection from all 11,500 Post Office branches. The option to collect in branch helps increase footfall at our branches and on the UK's High Streets.

Now open once more in the bustling heart of Liverpool, with brand new Garden Bar


LIKE many organisations, St Luke's Bombed Out Church has had to close during the Covid-19 lockdown period from March 2020. Set in the heart of the City, it has remained one of the Liverpool's most stunning venues, host to a wide range of music, arts and culture across the years, famously with its roof missing. St Luke's has, in the past, relied mainly on tourism; both local and international' for much of its income via visitor's charitable donations. Due to the quarantine restrictions placed on the UK, the team do not expect this income to continue for the foreseeable future and therefore have had to look at alternate sources of revenue to pay for ongoing expenses and maintenance. And now as the country's hospitality industry begins to open up again, they have got some very exciting news. The Bombed Out Church Garden Bar!

The team are now very proud to reveal their Bombed Out Church Garden Bar is now open. The Garden Bar will be operated within the gardens only around the church building itself, with ample space. It will offer a premium range of drinks, all via socially distanced table service only. All customers will order and pay for drinks using a smartphone by scanning a QR code which will display a drinks and simple food menu to order from. The food offering will be run by a local established and respected pizza company, Turncoat Pizza, offering delicious wood-fired pizzas made onsite and ordered in the same way with the QR Code.  The drinks include draught Budvar, offering 2 types of the Czech Republic's finest lagers, alongside some great local real ales from Liverpool Brewing Co and a modest, but comprehensive spirits list including lovely local gins and 1st class mixers. Orders are brought to each table by the venue's fantastic and Covid-19 trained serving staff. All the tables will have enormous parasols; 2.5m in diameter; so no matter the weather there will always be cover. The Garden Bar will only accept table-seated groups of 6 people maximum (from a maximum of 2 households).

To help keep everyone as safe as possible, extra measures are being taken. The Garden Bar company has paid for an independent COVID-19 assessment and implemented strict hygiene and safety measures for customers and staff, including a bespoke disinfecting system that automatically sanitizes the toilets after each use. This hygiene system has been designed and created here in Liverpool by the makers of Aintree Gin. Additionally, a state of the art, environmentally friendly system will be used to safely sanitize the polycarbonate glassware off site daily, provided by Event Cup Solutions.

Opening hours-

► Monday – closed (expect possibly for a bank holidays)

► Tuesday – Thursday: 12noon - 8pm

► Friday – Saturday: 12noon - 10pm

► Sunday – 12noon - 8pm

For more information, please visit:- BPCGardenBar.Co.UK.

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