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30 June 2020c0sk8dBid

Businesses in Westbourne are creating a floral welcome for visitors as things begin to open up.

Dawn McLachlan, landlady of The Porterhouse, and a team of volunteers have been adding plants around the trading centre.

Retailers, publicans, restaurants and hotels are gearing up for the relaxing of the rules and need to attract customers.

Dawn, a director of Bournemouth Coastal BID and Westbourne Business Association, said: “We’ve all been itching to get back open and now there is light at the end of the tunnel.

“Our volunteers have been able to plant lots of flowers, which will encourage people to come and visit.

“With the lockdown we were unable to prepare as usual for the summer, so we’re now catching up.

“This was a community project organised by the Westbourne Business Association and the community was excited to get involved.

“Our message to everyone is to help local businesses when they open, by using them.”

Fiona McArthur from the BID, which represents seven ‘villages’ – Tuckton, Pokesdown, Southbourne, Boscombe, East Cliff & West Cliff, Seafront and Westbourne – said: “The next few months will be crucial.

“So may businesses are re-opening – with restrictions – and they need support.

“By planting flowers and helping with other initiatives the BID is doing what it can to help local businesses attract people.

“We’d urge everyone to use local businesses and help them recover from the devastating effects of the lockdown.”