OPINION: Open it and they will come

HOSPITALITY and retail are funny ol' industries. Particularly here in the Clarence Valley. Over the few decades I've spent plenty of time and money shopping and eating and drinking around the traps and while some things have changed for the better a lot has stayed the same or gotten worse.

While weekdays are perfectly fine for such pursuits for many, weekends remain pretty dismal on the hospitality front across the Clarence, particularly if you work full-time.

If you aren't out first things on Saturday you basically miss out. And Sunday, well you have a handful of options but again, you have to be quick.

Office workers can also forget about popping in somewhere on your way home for something because if you don't meet the 15-minute rule (before closing time which is on the dot of 5pm) you may quite possibly be on the receiving end of a not so hospitable grunt.

Many moons ago finishing work, particularly on a Thursday or Friday, was an occasion to celebrate, and socialise with your fellow workers as licensed establishment's balance sheets once testified but the desire to do that sort of thing these days is dwindling. Perhaps the rise of the in-house entertainment has lessened to desire to socialise externally.

I could never understand why you would work in the hospitality or retail industry if you are only willing to open during the same hours as office workers.

Closing on a Monday or Tuesday and trading on Saturday and Sunday or opening at 10am and closing at 6pm could be a step in the right direction for those looking for new ways to capture a somewhat neglected audience. It's all about being more hospitable.

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