Optimism at Avia Autos as pandemic recovery begins

Positive news from GW columnist, Hayley Pells following a soft reopening after lockdown

Optimism at Avia Autos as pandemic recovery begins

Lockdown continues in Wales with some gentle lifting on restrictions stimulating tentative uptake of services at Avia Autos.

Returning to work was surprisingly difficult for me, it probably took far longer than it should to remember the various login requirements and passwords but my return was welcome.

The team here at Avia appear veteran in their developed routine of rotating staff to enable safe distancing and segregation of equipment.

Some new routines may become embedded in our way of working far beyond the pandemic and judging at the number of motorists I have seen at the traffic lights pick their noses and return hands to the steering wheel without so much as a wipe, I am now horrified we didn’t sanitise cars before.

The phone has started to ring more often and we are seeing a return to uptake of preventative maintenance and MOT testing rather than crisis repair which, during the depths of lockdown, became our only work.

Related: Six-month MOT extension to remain until tests can be “conducted safely”

I have been heartened by the uptake of MOT testing as I did have concern of the impact of road safety that the MOT extension could have.

It has been a genuine pleasure to see our regulars and be able to hear of their experiences over the last three months.

PPE is becoming less of an issue and our suppliers have not allowed any stock piling, meting out highly desired supplies with a fairness that reassures accumulation is not necessary as you will be able to purchase again.

This also seems to translate to my motorists and we have not had to hide our supplies from casual view for quite some time.

We were also delighted in Bridgend Council’s decision to recognise our business as retail, this has meant we have become eligible for the rates relief for the coming year, a huge help which has dramatically changed the landscape of our financial forecasting, protecting jobs and enabling us to keep our prices at the 2019 rate, which I am sure will be of great relief to our motorists who are also facing uncertainty.

Bridgend Council has gone further with an offer of training and a sneeze screen, developed especially for small business on successful completion, each business will be awarded a sticker to display in a similar way to food hygiene, to offer instantly recognisable and council backed reassurance to our consumers.

We are quietly optimistic we will survive this, a good way to start the summer.

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