It’s been a good year for Debbie Bollard but she like everyone in the industry just wants to get on with business. “I’m hoping that the pandemic dissipates and looking forward to less restrictions so that we can all go about life unhindered and the economy can recover,” she says. But we need to learn the lessons of 2021 and a government that stops making decisions according to “populist opinion”
DEBBIE BOLLARD LICENSING CONSULTANT HOUGH & BOLLARD
Coinslot: A year that opened in lockdown, staggered through to reopening, via a supply chain crisis and ending with Omicron: how will you look back on 2021?
Debbie Bollard: With a mixture of optimism, hope, frustration, and despair:
• Optimistic that life will generally get back to normal next year – things can only get better as we crawl out of the second year of the pandemic;
• Hope that we learn from the events of 2021 and ensure that they are not repeated in 2021;
• Frustration at a Government that appears to only be able to make decisions according to the popularist opinion whipped up by the media;
• Despair at a leader that takes us all for fools and those that cannot see this even when the very evidence is shoved right up their nose!
Coinslot: We’ve had five months since re-opening, what were your highlights of the year?
Debbie Bollard: • Seeing and hearing from Clients what a great summer they had as many of the population decided to stay in the UK and discover or rediscover the joys of a holiday at home;
• Going to ACOS and having in person chats, drinking beer and spending time just socialising with customers;
• Attending the Bacta Reception at the Houses of Parliament where I had the chance to discuss the Gambling Review with Scott Benton MP;
• Starting my 7th year trading on the back of my best year’s trading.
Coinslot: 2021 has been a major challenge to the way our businesses operate. How have you risen to this challenge and what new developments are you introducing to rebuild and strengthen your operation?
Debbie Bollard: I was in the fortunate position to already be operating from home and so lockdown and work from home restrictions did not affect my business in that sense.
I did reach out to Clients who might be thinking about changes to their business model and where I could be of assistance and I took the decision to look at other areas where I could develop my business and have seen some good results.
Coinslot: What are you looking or hoping for in 2022 and what’s on your New Year’s wish list?
Debbie Bollard: I, like everyone else, am hoping that the pandemic dissipates and looking forward to less restrictions so that we can all go about life unhindered and the economy can recover.
I hope that we as a country are able to generously and magnanimously acknowledge our differences and repair the divisions that have been created over the last 5 years and that we can all move on and get back to enjoying life.