A FIRM has reported a surge in business as lockdown-weary people seek the comfort and tranquility of aquariums.

Feniscowles firm Aqualease was founded in 2003 to supply fish tanks to schools, NHS hospitals and private businesses and has found that since the onset of the pandemic its services have been more and more in demand.

For company director Dan Green this comes as no surprise.

He said: “With mental wellbeing at the forefront of everyone’s minds, it has been really pleasing to hear how our aquariums have been a calming influence for our customers, whether it’s pupils and teachers in schools, service users and staff in care homes or small business owners.

“They have all felt the benefits.”

Despite the economic devastation wrought by the pandemic, Mr Green has managed to retain all his technicians who have made their services Covid secure.

As well as renting aquariums to offices and waiting rooms, the Laneside Works, Stockclough Lane-based company also offers temporary rock pool installations for schools which help give children a hands-on experience with different sea creatures and coral wreaths with a marine ranger on hand to guide them.

These sessions have also now been made Covid secure and the company says that they can help enhance children’s knowledge of literacy, numeracy, geography, and science and also develops problem-solving and teambuilding skills.

Seeing sea creatures up close also allows children to learn all about ocean conservation and the responsibility humans have to protect the environment.

Away from school settings, Mr Green believes that the stress the pandemic has put people under has heightened the need for his services, with studies showing that viewing aquarium displays can lead to noticeable reductions in blood pressure and heart rate, and that higher numbers of fish help to hold people’s attention for longer and improve their moods.

He said: “We are lucky to be in a sector that has managed to persevere through these turbulent times, and we are pleased our service is proving to be beneficial to our customers.

“We have some exciting new projects being developed to help wellbeing in both schools and businesses.”