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New forum gives lift to ‘play local’

Matt Clark, one of those behind a new Spalding Leisure and Evening Economy Forum.  ENGEMN00120130212131850

Matt Clark, one of those behind a new Spalding Leisure and Evening Economy Forum. ENGEMN00120130212131850

The UK night-time economy is worth about £66 billion a year and employs some 1.3 million people, according to the latest research.

In Lincolnshire, pubs, restaurants, hotels and nightclubs all form part of the visitor economy which is worth more than £1.3 billion to the county and supports more than 39,000 jobs.

All the more reason for a new Spalding Leisure and Evening Economy Forum to be formed under the umbrella of Spalding and District Chamber of Commerce.

Matt Clark, director of Activ Leisure which owns Loaded Nightclub and Alley Catz Bowling in Spalding, said: “The night-time economy employs a lot of people and the idea of the forum is to give businesses the opportunity to feed their issues and views to the local authority and trade bodies.

“There have been very few opportunities for businesses from the night-time economy to get together and discuss problems which are often common.

“Having a forum should enable us to overcome any problems more quickly and also give us more of a voice in terms of developing a stronger and more vibrant evening economy in Spalding.”

More than 100 businesses have been invited to a meeting at Bounce Sports Bar, off Westlode Street, Spalding, at 6pm tonight to launch the new forum.

Pete Williams, owner of the Punchbowl and the Hole in the Wall, Spalding, said: “It’s a good idea and one desperately needed in the town because the night-time economy is a forgotten economy.

“Everybody seems to be interested in encouraging people to go into shops but, generally speaking, there is a move to discourage people from going into pubs because it’s not the done thing.

“Focusing on the night-time economy and getting some support can only be a good thing.”

 

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