Silsden’s MP Robbie Moore has praised the ‘absolutely fantastic’ sense of community in the town as people rally round to support others during the Coronavirus crisis.
In an exclusive video interview with SilsdenToday, Mr Moore also revealed he’s working to help some local businesses who could miss out on government funding or loans.
“Without doubt, the last three weeks have been incredibly tough for everybody,” he said. “And the government have had to really adapt quite quickly to provide reassurance from a health perspective – but actually from a financial perspective, the mechanisms that the government have had put in place for employers, for employees, for those that are self-employed has been a phenomenal task.
“A lot of businesses have contacted me from Silsden and I know there are one or two that are falling through the gaps because they don’t meet the thresholds or the dates that have been put in place. I’m working with those businesses as best as I can and also working with the Treasury team – they’re very much wanting to hear from us as MPs as to how they can still help those businesses. It’s absolutely not a closed shop arrangement this at all.”
The MP, who was elected to serve Keighley and Ilkley just four months ago, also told SilsdenToday via videolink from his constituency office in Keighley that he was impressed by Silsden’s Mary Taylor – who’s been out running in fancy dress around town each day while raising money to support staff at Airedale Hospital.
“The sense of community is absolutely fantastic,” said Mr Moore. “And yes, I’ve seen Mary’s video that the BBC pulled together. I take my hat off to Mary for coming up with that ingenious idea. I think it’s great and puts a smile on everyone’s face.”
He also praised the work of more than 100 local volunteers who have set up a helpline for residents to call if they need support with collecting shopping and prescriptions, or if they just want someone to chat to.
“The Silsden Helpline just shows that in tough times, we do pull together,” he told SilsdenToday. “And there is that feeling of ‘yes, it’s gonna be tough’, but when we all listen to the guidance that’s been put in place, adapt to that guidance and pull together as a community we’ll get through this.
“Before the Coronavirus situation came along we were all very busy people and I think what you’ve seen over the last three weeks is people actually speaking to one another when they are doing their one piece of exercise that they can do. Just making sure that everyone is actually OK or going out of their way just to check on their neighbour that they might have not checked on before.
“It’s awesome to see – but that true spirit is really coming through and I think it is absolutely shining at the moment in Silsden, in Keighley, in Ilkley and in Addingham.”