Newcastle Falcons stars show support for South Shields family entertainment centre as it gears up for reopening

Newcastle Falcons stars have come together to show their support for South Shields family entertainment centre, The Dunes, as it prepares to reopen its doors to the public once again after having weathered its toughest ever year.

Monday, 10th May 2021, 7:00 am

Captain Mark Wilson and current Scotland international Gary Graham were joined by former England fly half Toby Flood for a virtual engagement with employees and to showcase some of the facilities at The Dunes with the players putting the ten-pin bowling equipment through its paces on the pitch at Kingston Park.

Through its ‘Tackling Tomorrow Together’ initiative, insurance broker and risk management specialist, Gallagher, is helping support six UK businesses and a regional children’s charity that according to the firm “have shown real resilience, tenacity and pioneering spirit during the COVID-19 pandemic”.

As part of the campaign, The Dunes was paired with the North East’s top rugby union club, Newcastle Falcons, to help give the borough business an extra boost after an extraordinarily tough year.

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Kenneth Reader, Managing Director of The Dunes. said : "The last 12 months have been the toughest ever for The Dunes."

As a leisure facility, the business was forced to close the doors on its giant soft play area, bowling alley and amusement arcade back in March 2020, with extremely limited opportunities to reopen since.

When it was able to open temporarily last August, Dunes ensured COVID-19 control measures such as safety screens and hand sanitiser stations were in place throughout the building to keep staff and customers safe, costing them thousands of pounds at a challenging financial time.

This month the Dunes is set to open again after the latest lockdown. In the interim, Gallagher has been assisting with its business continuity plans and says it is shaping a robust insurance and risk management approach to help the business transition out of lockdown and towards normal trading conditions.

“When we closed our doors last March, we had no idea when we would be able to open again,” said Kenneth Reader, Managing Director of The Dunes.

Newcastle Falcons players Toby Flood, Mark Wilson, Gary Graham pose during the photocall for Gallagher Tackling Tomorrow. Together Campaign for Dunes at Kingston Park.

"The last 12 months have been the toughest ever for The Dunes as we have had very little opportunity to trade even during our usually packed summer months.

“The whole team is super excited at the prospect of finally throwing back open our doors this month to welcome in families and friends for some much-needed fun, and we’re grateful for the ongoing support Gallagher has provided us throughout this tricky situation.

"It was great to see the Newcastle Falcons players getting stuck in with some of our facilities and we look forward to being able to watch the team play at Kingston Park in the not-too-distant future.”

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