Trish Cannon, director of the Wensleydale Creamery Visitor Centre, has been named one of The Grocer’s Dairy Heroes 2020.
Trish was nominated for going above and beyond to keep the Hawes-based business operating during the start of the coronavirus pandemic and for how quickly she adapted to the unforeseen circumstances of the pandemic.
When the visitor centre, which ordinarily attracts 350,000 visitors every year, had to close overnight, Trish worked to spearhead the overnight launch of an online deli.
Bringing the offering of cheese, butter, and local produce online, it enabled consumers around the UK to order their favourite cheese and accompaniments and have them delivered direct to their door via mail order.
Trish also launched an initiative giving staff at the creamery, the biggest employer in the area, and its supplying farmers access to groceries via the visitor centre, which had closed to the public but was still working to feed the creamery’s cheesemakers and staff.
This helped to ensure cheesemaking could continue, and in turn, the creamery could continue to take in all the milk from local farms and maintain supply of cheese to customers.
Trish also championed recognition of local NHS staff, with an initiative to provide donations of cheese, cakes and homemade biscuits to local hospitals, A&E departments, and ICUs on a weekly basis to thank the NHS workers on the front line.
As the UK enters the second lockdown, the online deli will continue to deliver its comprehensive range of Yorkshire Wensleydale cheese and Yorkshire Creamery handcrafted cheese to shoppers’ homes.
The online deli also features a large selection of local produce from crackers, chutneys and oils to biscuits, sweets, chocolate, and fruitcake, available to purchase with delivery direct to customers’ doors.
Speaking of her award, Trish said: “I was delighted to be awarded dairy hero, and for our team to be recognised for all their hard work.
“Here at the Wensleydale Creamery, we are determined to do whatever we can to bring happiness to homes and support our customers to get their favourite cheese delivered to their door.
“When the pandemic first hit and supermarkets were facing increasing demand and pressure, we didn’t want to see people go without the everyday essentials – so we launched our online deli to ensure everyone was able to easily access our award-winning cheeses, as well as supporting other local Yorkshire businesses whose delicious food products and locally-made gifts are available through our mail order.”
“As we enter the second lockdown and lead up till Christmas, the online deli is a great place to pick up gifts, with a wide range of local produce on offer. It is a great way to treat yourself or send special gifts to your loved ones, as well as supporting our deeply rural community.
“We’ve also introduced a fantastic selection of new hampers and unique gifts available to buy from our website too, making it the perfect place to buy Christmas gifts.”