The Wensleydale Creamery at Hawes welcomed Richmond MP Rishi Sunak today following the reopening of its popular Visitor Centre.
The Chancellor toured the Yorkshire Wensleydale Cheese Experience and watched the creamery’s master cheesemakers in action from the viewing gallery, also trying his hand at cheese grading in the visitor centre.
Mr Sunak said: “It’s a privilege to visit and celebrate the reopening of the Wensleydale Creamery Visitor Centre, an iconic business with deep rooted heritage in the Yorkshire Dales, which attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors to the area.
“It is remarkable to see how the business has responded and innovated during these difficult times with the success of its online mail order service and it is encouraging to see visitors being welcomed back to its fantastic visitor experience within the heart of the Yorkshire Dales National Park.”
Trish Cannon, visitor centre director, said: “We welcome Rishi’s visit as we reopen our doors to customers for the first time since March.
“We’ve worked extremely hard to put measures in place to ensure the safety of our staff and visitors whilst creating a friendly environment for everyone to visit, and we have received overwhelmingly positive feedback so far.
“We are looking forward to introducing the Eat Out to Help Out scheme, which will offer 50 per cent discount up to the value of £10 to customers dining at Calvert’s Restaurant and the 1897 Coffee Shop, where customers can enjoy our brand-new menus celebrating the best of Yorkshire produce.”
Sandra Bell, marketing manager, added: “We’ve been overwhelmed by the demand for our mail order offering, proving that by listening to the needs of our customers and being innovative and willing to adapt to market conditions, a business can survive even in demanding conditions.
“This has been supported by our recent £1.4m investment programme (part funded by an EU productivity grant) in the Creamery to increase capacity and improve efficiency in our cheesemaking process, catering for increased demand in pre-pack sales for Yorkshire Wensleydale and capacity to produce our new Yorkshire Creamery range.”
“We thank our farmers and tanker drivers who have continued to supply milk to the Creamery which has been central to our continued production during the pandemic, and to our customers for their overwhelming support and understanding throughout.
“All of our staff, both cheesemakers and mail order team have also worked tirelessly to ensure we continued to deliver fantastic tasting cheeses, customer service and quality over the past couple of months.
“We’re really lucky to have such a great workforce.”