Going, going, scone: Customers queue at Jarrold to get their hands on favourites
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2020
The boss of Norwich’s Jarrold believes there was one item many shoppers were desperate to get their hands on when the famous, independent department store reopened today.
Chief executive Minnie Moll was on the doors herself welcoming back customers after the store closed in March because of coronavirus.
And she reckoned many people were heading straight to the delicatessen to pick up a Jarrold scone. Apparently the first batch sold so fast, the chef had to make another lot.
All Jarrold restaurants and cafes have to remain closed because of government regulations but deli items and coffee are available for takeaway.
Ms Moll said numbers were limited to 180 and around 140 people had come into the store at 10am, all using the hand sanitiser at the entrance, adhering to social distancing and using the new one-way system operating around the store.
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As well as scones, many shoppers had come in for specific beauty products they said they could not buy online as well as presents and about 10-15pc wore masks.
For Ms Moll and Jarrold staff, many who were unfurloughed to return to work, the reopening was an emotional experience.
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“I would liken it to a first night at the theatre, there was anticipation and excitement, like the curtain going up. When the doors opened, there was a really positive atmosphere, people were coming over the threshold and saying ‘well done Jarrold’,” she said.
“It’s another little milestone, another step forward, the feeling was palpable, people wanting to take steps towards more normality.”
She said she had not had any sleepless nights over the reopening which has been planned for some weeks and went according to schedule.
Ms Moll said the numbers coming in were greater than pre-lockdown for a Monday morning but that the retailer was going to have to see how footfall was over the coming weeks.
“We will be intensely watching traffic flow, it was nice to have a flurry at the door. It was emotional,” she said. “I was delighted there was a queue of loyal customers but not too many as I was worried about that. One lady who came in just threw up her hands, she was so delighted.
“People were telling me they had come with a very specific to do list, ladies knowing exactly which beauty brands and some people admitted they had some just for the scones.”
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