The true Mid and East Antrim spirit of community has been captured on the big screen as part of a major marketing campaign aimed at celebrating the businesses that are the beating heart of our towns and villages.
The video, ‘We are all Mid and East Antrim’, hears how local businesses, many of which have been operating for generations, were forced to close their doors overnight at the height of the Covid-19 lockdown.
There is hope and determination, too, as everyone from barbers to butchers, bakers to boutiques, tell of the support from their customers as they worked to reopen safely again.
Created by local filmmaker Stephen Reid of Grafters Media for Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, the video is one in a series showcasing the human stories behind our businesses and is part of Council’s bespoke #ShopSafe, #SupportLocal and #RediscoverMEA marketing campaign.
Digital displays celebrating the uniqueness of each of the town’s three main towns – Ballymena, Larne and Carrickfergus – have also been encouraging shoppers and visitors to support local and enjoy the warm welcome the area is famous for.
Reinvigorating the local economy is a key priority for Council, which established a Town Centre Recovery Group in June to help retailers open their doors safely to the public through a range of initiatives including Retail Safety Packs and Confidence Stickers.
Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr Peter Johnston, has seen the new video and said:
“Have your tissues at the ready because the stories of how our local businesses have emerged stronger than ever from the darkest days of the Coronavirus pandemic is truly awe inspiring!
“Thank you to all the traders who shared their experiences of the challenges they faced when they closed their doors to protect public health during a time of crisis.
“The business community of Mid and East Antrim is renowned for being resilient and agile to changing economic circumstances, and this video captures that determination perfectly.
“I have no doubt our citizens will get behind the businesses on their doorstep, with the knowledge that every step has been taken to ensure they can shop safely and support local. We are all Mid and East Antrim!”