A positive step forward as high streets reopen for first time in months

Great Yarmouth town centre. Market place, shops reopening as lock down is lifted. Pictures: BRITTANY

Great Yarmouth town centre. Market place, shops reopening as lock down is lifted. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant

After almost three months of strict lockdown our high streets will reopen from today as life for us all slowly returns to a new normal.

People heading to Great Yarmouth will find all the seafront toilets open but in the town centre only

People heading to Great Yarmouth will find all the seafront toilets open but in the town centre only the ones at The Conge are open Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant

It is a crucial time for high streets up and down the country as non-essential retailers are permitted to reopen their doors for the first time since the end of March as they adhere to strict guidelines, including social distancing.

This newspaper has launched the Love Local campaign to encourage people to spend within our region and give the independent industry a vital boost as businesses across the county reopen their doors following the coronavirus lockdown.

Zoos and safari parks, places of worship for private prayer, auction houses, photography studios, electronics retailers, indoor markets and all other non-essential shops such as those selling clothes, shoes and toys will also reopen to the public today.

Nova Fairbank, head of policy for the Norfolk Chambers of Commerce, said: “Businesses will welcome the opportunity to reopen their stores and return their workers to full employment.

People heading to Great Yarmouth will find all the seafront toilets open but in the town centre only

People heading to Great Yarmouth will find all the seafront toilets open but in the town centre only the ones at The Conge are open Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant


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“Having said that we want to ensure that conditions are safe for staff as well as the general public so its proceed with caution but hopefully this is the start of better things for people.”

She added: “I think that we’ve got to look at this as another positive step forward, but we have to proceed with caution, We don’t want a second spike.”

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Customers returning to shops are likely to be greeted by floor markings indicating one-way systems and signs reminding them to keep two metres apart from other shoppers as well as staff.

Jonty Young, head or marketing for Norwich Lanes, insisted the city would overcome this.

Great Yarmouth seafront was quiet on a sunny Saturday, June 13. There were dog walkers and small gro

Great Yarmouth seafront was quiet on a sunny Saturday, June 13. There were dog walkers and small groups enjoying walks as attractions and shops remained closed. Pictures: Anthony Carroll - Credit: Archant

He said: “Norwich has gone through riots, two plagues and been bombed and these buildings are still here.”

Alistair Cox, manager of King’s Lynn’s Vancouver Quarter shopping district, said: “We all are adapting to the new normal and we ask shoppers to appreciate that measures being put in place are to keep everyone safe.”

But it is not just shops which are due to reopen today.

Zoos can reopen, although indoor exhibitions, such as reptile houses, will still be closed,

Churches and other places of worship can open for private prayer in England from Monday.

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