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Campaign puts flood-hit businesses back on the map

Monday, 4th April 2016

A national social media campaign launched over Easter weekend looks set to put Ribble Valley’s flood-affected shops and businesses back on the map.

And Lancashire residents are being invited to visit Ribble Valley and help the borough’s flood-hit shops get back to business.

The national spotlight fell on Ribble Valley on Boxing Day, when it suffered the worst floods in 50 years.

Now a national campaign, #openforbusiness, has been launched featuring a digital map showcasing shops and attractions in flood-affected areas that have reopened.

Ribble Valley businesses affected by the floods can add themselves to the map, which will be promoted in a national advertising campaign and on the London Underground.

Ribble Valley Borough Council leader Stuart Hirst said: “The visitor economy is crucial to Ribble Valley and we welcome this campaign.

“Our message to visitors is this: It is ‘business as usual’ in Ribble Valley, particularly in Whalley, Billington and Ribchester, so come along and see what our delightful villages have to offer.”

The #openforbusiness campaign is part of a £1million Government marketing boost aimed at attracting visitors to flood-affected areas in the North and will also include a promotional push abroad by VisitBritain.

Culture Secretary John Whittingdale added: “We are ensuring that tourism businesses are given as much support as possible as they recover from the floods.

“The message is clear – the North is full of world-class attractions that are very much open for business and this campaign will showcase the many fantastic places that are ready to welcome visitors in the coming weeks and months.”

According to official figures, in 2014 Ribble Valley attracted 3.7million visitors, who spent £187million and supported 2,754 full-time equivalent jobs.

Whalley is famous for its 13th Century Cistercian abbey, 49-arch viaduct, which is considered a triumph of Victorian engineering, and exclusive shopping, while the ancient riverside village of Ribchester is built on the site of a former Roman fort and its award-winning museum features a Roman helmet discovered in 1797.

Businesses can add themselves to the #openforbusiness map at http://bit.ly/openforbusinessmap. Further information about days out in Ribble Valley are available from the Clitheroe Visitor Information Centre on 01200 425566 or visitribblevalley.co.uk.

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