A Dundee street food vendor has thanked communities for supporting local businesses during the coronavirus lockdown.
Chris Heather, who runs Heather Street Food, said he was terrified about the future of his firm when lockdown started, after he had £13,000-worth of business wiped out in just one week.
However, he has since been able to adapt to offer people home deliveries and has enjoyed an unprecedented amount of public support.
He said: “I would not have been able to do this without the community.
“It was terrifying at first, but now it is amazing.
“I was sending my details to farmers to go berry picking and looking for any way to make money. I was going to be applying for jobseekers’ allowance.”
He added: “It is scary, you have all these plans you have been working on for years to build up your name, and it was all going to be undone in the space of a month.
“We had about £13,000 of business wiped out in one week, including a corporate booking at the National Galleries that would have been £6,000.
“A lot of our bookings have been postponed and rescheduled to next year, but there are things like the Edinburgh Fringe and Glamis Food Festival which have been cancelled and the bookings won’t come back.
“A lot of money just vanished.”
Chris runs three street food vans offering alcoholic drinks, gourmet stovies and ice cream and caters for weddings and other events, but has been able to adapt his business during lockdown to offer home deliveries of stovies instead.
Thanking the community for supporting businesses like his, he said: “It has been amazing to get back to work and deliver food to people, and it means I can stay busy and not go mad at home.
“It has been a great test of ingenuity and willpower to come up with a way to reinvent yourself.”
He continued: “It has been great the way people have been supporting local businesses.
“There is a charitable edge to it too – people know local businesses are struggling just now and need their support.
“People really look forward to getting a delivery of something that is a bit different and is local, safe and fresh.
“I want to say a huge thank you to everyone because they don’t have to do this.”
He also paid tribute to his “fellow caterers and street traders” in what he described as a “non-competitive industry where everyone looks out for one another”.
Chris added: “Everyone is in good spirits.
“It has been good to reconnect with a simpler, happier life that is not focused on money but on meaningful things like being with your family and spending time in the sunshine.”