BUSINESSES in Minehead have been making the most of the prolonged summer sunshine and ‘feel-good’ factor associated with England’s World Cup run.

Somerset has been experiencing an unusually long heatwave, and traders say they have noticed takings are up.

John Flanagan-Hall of Blenheim Gardens Cafe said: “This weather has been great for us, ice cream sales must have doubled.”

“There must have been around 400 people in the gardens on Saturday - we just hope the weather continues through the upcoming series of live concerts in the park.”

Chris Corbett, owner of the Hairy Dog pub and restaurant said the sunshine and football had produced a boost.

“It definitely helps business. I think the sunshine means there has been a ‘feel-good factor’ for people coming in.

“We’ve been very busy during the World Cup games so far and I hope that continues for the final.”

Maxine Stewart at The Cod Shop in The Avenue said that it had ups and downs for her business.

“We have less people eating in the restaurant but the takeaway side of things is doing well,” she said.

“However sometimes when it is very warm people have less of an appetite - it has been a bit up and down for us,”

Some businesses said that while the warm weather was welcome, more events were needed to really capitalise on it.

Danielle Prosser at Beach Hut Gifts said: “We are doing well at the moment but it is just a shame there are not a few more events to really bring people in.

“The upcoming Summer Festival with the speedboat racing should be good, but the loss of the Red Arrows and the Raft Race have a big impact.”

Danielle said sales of ice cream, slush puppies and bottled water were up, as well as inflatables as more people were swimming in the sea as the water was warmer.

Valerie Pickford at the Jubilee Cafe said she hoped more events could be based along the Promenade as she felt it was underused and would encourage visitors from Butlins towards the town as opposed to heading towards the supermarkets and McDonalds.

Dave Baker of Styles Ice Cream said while the weather was great for business, it was only making up for a poor start to the year due to the snow and bad Easter weather.