Many shops across Knowsley will be opening their doors again from Monday 15 June – for the first time since lockdown measures were introduced in March.
This follows the Government announcement that non-essential retailers including clothes shops, gift shops and others, can reopen as part of its plan to ease the current lockdown measures in place across the country.
Shops such as barbers, beauty salons and hairdressers together with restaurants and bars must remain closed for now.
Knowsley Council has been working with local business owners across its town centres in Huyton, Kirkby and Prescot to help them prepare to reopen safely – so that staff and customers can visit in confidence.
It means that your high street may look a little different next time you visit – and there will be some new ‘rules’ to understand, too.
How are Knowsley’s high streets ensuring safe opening?
- Shops will have signs and floor markings in place to help people follow social distancing measures and will have cleaning, handwashing and hygiene procedures in line with government guidance.
- Where appropriate, one way systems will be introduced (such as in Kirkby Market) with floor markers guiding shoppers.
- Across all town centres, the council has installed signage and street markings to help people follow social distancing measures outside of the shops and temporary barriers are in place in some areas to help direct queues.
- Shops will be limiting the number of visitors in the premises at any one time, so visitors may be asked to queue. In some parts of the borough, temporary barriers have been introduced to manage traffic and pedestrian flow.
- Where possible, shoppers are also being asked to use contactless payment rather than cash.
- All businesses will be displaying the COVID-19 secure posters to re-assure shoppers that measures have been put in place to provide a safe shopping environment.
Cllr Tony Brennan, Knowsley’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Growth said:
“This is really positive news for our local business owners. During the lockdown period, the council has supported businesses with financial advice and guidance, but businesses have been keen to reopen and get back to some normal sense of trading.
Our teams across the council have been working with local business owners to ensure that they follow the guidance in place and their premises will be able to open safely to staff and customers.
People visiting our town centres will notice a number of changes in order to comply with social distancing, including a lot more signage, floor markers and queueing systems. We are encouraging people to be sensible and to follow the guidance to help keep themselves and others safe.
Knowsley’s town centres are open for business but people should only visit when necessary and they should continue to follow the guidance to stay safe and stay alert.”
To support those who want to shop local and support Knowsley traders, the council is continuing to offer free car parking in the borough’s town centre. The council-owned multi storey car parks in Huyton and Kirkby will also reopen from Monday 15 June. Visitors are being urged to consider other drivers, road users and shoppers when parking.
Parking officers will be patrolling the borough to ensure that visitors are parking legally and safely.
From Monday 15 June, it is mandatory to wear a face covering if you are using public transport to help to stop the spread of the virus. More information about making and wearing face coverings is available here.
Please also note that public transport timetables may be affected due to the pandemic and you are advised to check timetables before leaving the house. Further information can be found at www.merseytravel.gov.uk