Lockdown sparks rise in new cottage industries in the East of England

  • Watch this video report by ITV Anglia's Elodie Harper

There has been an 8% rise in companies being set up in our region, as people try new ventures from home during the pandemic.

During the first lockdown, Emma Talbot from Bedford found that her mental health suffered.

She was furloughed last March and had to home-school her two children.

Emma started sewing in the evenings which was therapeutic to her and so she decided to turn her hobby into a side business.

Across the UK in 2020 there was a 13% increase in new businesses. June specifically, saw a surge of 45%.

Gabby and Matt Pearson from Bedford started up a takeaway business from their home in last year's second lockdown. They have now even employed a delivery driver for the weekends.

Credit: ITV News Anglia

Many of the new businesses may dwindle when people no longer have to stay home.

Emma wants to go back to her day job and keep the hairbands as a side hustle.

On the flipside, Gabby and Matt are in talks to move their business to restaurant premises after lockdown. They hope their lockdown takeaways will bring them a whole new future.