Cre­ative think­ing keeps Che­viot afloat

Northern Outlook - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - BUSI­NESS

Stay­ing open seven days per week has been made pos­si­ble for Two Rivers Cafe´ in Che­viot af­ter re­ceiv­ing the town’s first busi­ness re­cov­ery grant.

Owner Deb­bie An­der­son, who is also chair of Che­viot Pro­mo­tions As­so­ci­a­tion, said she was de­lighted to re­ceive the Min­istry of Busi­ness In­no­va­tion and Em­ploy­ment (MBIE) grant which en­sured that she could re­main open and re­tain all her staff while await­ing the re­open­ing of SH1.

‘‘The roads were empty af­ter the earth­quake with 80 per cent less traf­fic and while busi­ness has picked up now, with the road closed from Tues­day to Thurs­day we do no­tice a drop off in pass­ing traf­fic on those days.’’

The af­ter­math of the earth­quake had brought the com­mu­nity closer to­gether with busi­nesses de­vis­ing cre­ative strate­gies to draw vis­i­tors from Christchurch and North Can­ter­bury.

‘‘We’ve had to think out­side the box to get through dif­fi­cult times. Chang­ing our prod­uct range and pric­ing strat­egy, along with mak­ing cakes to take away and tak­ing prod­ucts to cus­tomers are some of the op­tions we ex­plored.’’

Suc­cess­ful ini­tia­tives to pro­mote Che­viot busi­nesses, prod­ucts and ser­vices in­cluded a Taste Hu­runui fundrais­ing din­ner at the Christchurch Casino, and ham­pers filled with lo­cal prod­ucts to sup­port smaller busi­nesses.

‘‘We’ve been amazed by the fan­tas­tic sup­port we have re­ceived from all sorts of busi­nesses and or­gan­i­sa­tions. Hav­ing groups from Christchurch and North Can­ter­bury come to visit for the day has re­ally boosted lo­cal busi­nesses. It re­ally has meant the world to us to see how much Cantabri­ans care about each other.

‘‘The mayor has been just bril­liant right from the start and is al­ways been avail­able to help us when­ever we’ve needed it. En­ter­prise North Can­ter­bury have helped lo­cal busi­nesses ac­cess earth­quake sub­si­dies which has been ab­so­lutely vi­tal for us.’’

With SH1 set to re­open, An­der­son saw a bright fu­ture for Che­viot and was ex­cited about a mar­ket­ing cam­paign to high­light walk­ing and cy­cling along with the up­com­ing spring fair.

‘‘We’ve def­i­nitely put our­selves on the map and we’re cre­at­ing a pos­i­tive fu­ture for Che­viot.’’

SUPPLIED

Deb­bie An­der­son of Che­viot’s Two Rivers Cafe says a re­cov­ery grant has al­lowed her busi­ness to stay open.

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