New chamber chair hails the ‘determination to thrive’ of Exmouth businesses

PUBLISHED: 12:00 06 October 2020

New chamber of commerce chair. Picture: Laura Woodward-Drake

New chamber of commerce chair. Picture: Laura Woodward-Drake


Exmouth businesses showed their ‘determination to thrive’ as the coronavirus lockdown unfolded, according to the new chamber of commerce chairman.

The art project to rejuvenate Exmouth beach. Picture: Laura Woodward-DrakeThe art project to rejuvenate Exmouth beach. Picture: Laura Woodward-Drake

Laura Woodward-Drake, who has taken over the role after Ian MacQueen stepped down, also said that by supporting each other, businesses in Exmouth can bounce back.

She said: “It’s been a very difficult seven months for the majority, with lives and livelihoods being drastically affected by the current situation.

“But it’s apparent in the business community that, thanks to the resilience and ambition of local companies, for many, the story is not over yet.

“For those who could, they adapted. For those who generated the ideas to, they pivoted.

“New and innovative businesses have emerged and some current businesses have found opportunity in the virtual market.

“When the Exmouth Chamber of Commerce first launched our online support forums, it was clear that all industries faced crisis, especially the tourism and hospitality sector, which is at the heart of the town.

“However, as the situation unfolded and we launched the Virtual Business Awards, the determination to survive, thrive and celebrate achievements grew.

“Exmouth is an amazing place to live and work and I look forward to continuing the brilliant support of our business network, as the new chair of the chamber of commerce, working alongside the amazing efforts of the town council, local MP Simon Jupp and the great volunteers in the exeutive.

“Whilst face to face sessions are not an option, we are running online speed networking to encourage communication and collaboration, with the next event on October 22.

“In addition to this, I will be checking in with all members to see how they are doing, how our group can support and interviewing many for our Local Business Booster – an online promotion initiative to show off the good news from local companies and give them an extra platform for exposure.

“Of course, it’s a long road ahead and many have further struggles to endure. But, by supporting each other, we will bounce back in one way or another.”

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