Last April there was research from the Centre for Towns organisation that suggested that Nairn was the town the most likely to suffer from Lockdown restrictions given the make up of the businesses in the local economy. We were compared with Newquay in Cornwall but not in a good way at all - that town was also predicted to take a big hit. Readers can find that article here: Nairn - Think tank suggests we are the Scottish town with the most people employed in sectors currently shut down due to Covid-19.
We see today an indication that the contraction in the economy may have been the worst since 1709 on the BBC Business pages. So whatever the extent that our local economy suffers it may be at the top end of an already very bad scenario.
This week's edition of the Nairnshire Courier printed a table of movement in the take up of of Universal credit. The worst stats are in Inverness with four districts with over a 100% increase. Here in Nairn things are as follows:
The figures are December 2020 claimants as compared to March 2020
Nairn Rural up to 236 from 127 an increase of 85.83%
Nairn West up to 264 from 154 an increase of 71.43%
Nairn East up to 440 from 270 and increase of 62.96%
At some point things will get going again but it looks like the support networks and the willingness to help others are going to be needed long after we get free of the worse effects and restrictions that Covid brought to our lives. Let's look out for each other Gurnshire - a strong supportive community will be very important in the months and possibly years to come!