Wightlink re-opened the cafes at its Portsmouth and Fishbourne ports this week. The outlets on either side of the flagship route have been modified in the light of current restrictions and guidance on COVID-19 but are still able to offer fresh produce directly from Island producers.
The cafes, which are now offering take-away food and drink, have had protective Perspex screens put up between customers and staff, social distancing markers placed on the floor and have moved over to card-only transactions. As the cafes are situated within Wightlink’s customer buildings, customers are also asked to wear a face covering when visiting.
The re-opening will mean the company can begin once again to offer enhanced facilities to travellers and also recommence using the Isle of Wight suppliers whose produce is a feature of Wightlink’s retail outlets.
“It is a small step but a significant one,” says Wightlink’s chief executive Keith Greenfield.
“We are, in a very controlled way, starting to ease back to some sort of normality. This is good news for our customers and also for our suppliers such as Wight Crystal, Island Roasted, Briddlesford Farm and Grace’s Bakery whose lines we are once again offering to travellers.
“The safety of colleagues and customers remains paramount and we have taken all the necessary measures we can to ensure we comply with all the current health advice, while supporting local Isle of Wight producers again.”
Wightlink was first awarded the Wight Marque by the Royal Isle of Wight Agricultural Society in June 2018 and has continued to expand the range of Island produce that it stocks. The ferry company is also supporting the Let’s Buy Local campaign by continuing to introduce customers to local food, so they are encouraged to support food producers across the Island.