There’s a new Covid-19 app for Sunderland! That’s right folks, with the help of a crafty ‘real time’ app, Sunderland businesses are making it safer for us to venture out into the city this autumn.


A unique app which allows visitors and local people to navigate their way around attractions, hospitality and leisure venues is to be piloted in Sunderland before being rolled out nationwide.

The Locale has been developed to benefit both businesses and users, providing real-time information about what bars, restaurants, cafes, retail and other cultural outlets have to offer.

The creators believe it is now going to be more valuable than ever to organisations, with its ability to give up to date information about social distancing, queues and promotional deals at venues across the city centre.

The Locale has been working closely with Sunderland BID to launch the app, with plans to then bring on board other North East towns and cities before growing it into a nationwide network.

Grant Thompson, founder of the company, said that a number of Sunderland businesses had already signed up, including The Engine Room and Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens and he is excited about more businesses getting involved.

The Locale has been in development for a number of years but was reworked to factor in the impact of the “new normal” post-Covid.

The app – which can be downloaded from the app store or via the website at – is currently free for both customers and businesses and anyone wanting to sign their venue up should contact [email protected]

Sharon Appleby, Head of Business Operations at Sunderland BID said she was delighted The Locale was being piloted in the city.

“This is a great opportunity for city centre businesses to be the first in the country to try an augmented reality app which can provide up to the minute information.

“We hope everyone will get behind it and sign up to be involved.”

Come on Sunderland, let’s do our bit! Be safe, stay alert and plan before heading out.

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