Revitalising town and city centres will help Lagan Valley recover after the pandemic, Alliance representatives in the constituency have said

COVID-19 Sorcha Eastwood Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council David Honeyford Lagan Valley

Councillor Sorcha Eastwood and Councillor David Honeyford, who have recently been selected as the party’s representatives in the area, said businesses across Lagan Valley will need help rebuilding as society seeks to come out of the COVID crisis.

“Myself and Councillor Honeyford have been engaging with businesses and traders across Lagan Valley over the past number of months and they have each told us the same thing,” said Councillor Eastwood.

“They need support and also imaginative thinking to not only flourish but ensure they survive in the first place. Other cities have taken steps to reimagine town centres and we need to do likewise. That can be a key economic driver and is a chance to address issues these businesses have experienced pre-COVID.”

“One of the ideas we have been working on is an initiative which would see restaurants, bars and other outlets being able to avail of outdoor seating, particularly as we move into the summer months,” said Councillor Honeyford.

“It is vital businesses are given a fighting chance to get back on their feet after the pandemic and we must do all we can to help them. By revitalising the city centre and town centres, we can rebuild the entire constituency.

“A night-time cafe culture and summer markets are other ideas which would encourage footfall back into towns as we change things after COVID. The economic regeneration of the local area will also help drive tourists to the constituency, enhance the arts sector and encourage more positive community relations.”