"It’s been great to see more of our colleagues at Gloucester Services getting back to work in the past week, after time in furlough for many. The Kitchens and Farmshops are now fully open and it’s been great to see the social media praise for the new measures in place to keep people safe. Lockdown has been tough for most of us, and now more than ever we want to support our local people and their businesses. Gloucester Services stocks the produce of over 130 local producers based within 30 miles of the site on the M5, and a further 70 within the region, many of whom are family businesses, small or businesses and even one-person-bands trying to make a living from their passion. Everything from Cinderhill Farm’s infamous sausage rolls (made in the Forest of Dean), to Beeswax Wraps (made in Nailsworth), to the delicious organic milk from Jess’s Ladies farm in Hardwicke, shows how much talent and fabulous produce is at our fingertips locally.
Some of the Gloucester Services team back this week as the Kitchens reopen
Deborah and Neil from Cinderhill Farm in the Forest of Dean with their infamous sausage rolls sold at Gloucester Services
Last year we hosted two ‘meet the buyer’ events to give local producers the chance to meet the team at Gloucester Services and pitch their goods. It was great to see some of those making it into the Farmshops and Kitchens before lockdown, and I really hope people will now start coming back in there and buying local.
Of course we’re also keen for this to happen to ensure we can continue supporting our local communities, with up to 3p in every £ spent at Gloucester Services coming back to GGT to invest in local people and projects. Every year this income means we can reinvest over £200,000 back in locally through our fantastic community partners and other projects, but as Sarah Dunning, Chair of our business partner at Gloucester Services said on BBC Radio Gloucestershire last week – we can only receive that income when the business is open and thriving. They say charity starts at home, but doesn’t everything? Support local businesses, support local people. We hope to see you at Gloucester Services next time you’re passing."
The new cake counter at the Gloucester Services Farmshop, just one of the new hygiene measures in place
Hardwicke Farm in Gloucester, home of Jess's Ladies organic milk, available from Gloucester Services