English shops, attractions to reopen as virus lockdown eased

Janet Edwards from Janet Edwards Florist in Brixton displays a “WE’RE OPEN” sign on Monday, 15 June 2020

Various stores and outdoor attractions in England are set to open Monday for the first time in nearly three months, as the government continues to ease its coronavirus lockdown, AFP reports.

Thousands of non-essential retailers such as bookstores and electronics outlets hope to welcome their first customers since halting in-store business in late March.

Leisure sites such as drive-in cinemas, safari parks and the outdoor parts of zoos will now be able to reopen, while places of worship are also set to swing open their doors again for individual prayer.

All sites will need to comply with social distancing rules requiring people to keep at least two metres (six feet) apart and advising them to wear face coverings such as masks or scarves when indoors.

Meanwhile, the coverings will be compulsory on public transport across England from Monday, with operators allowed to bar travel to those not wearing them.

“I know people are anxious,” finance minister Rishi Sunak said Sunday as he encouraged shopping to help kickstart an economy seeing unprecedented declines.

“It’s a slightly different experience… but it is a safe environment and we should all be able to go out knowing that we should be able to shop in confidence,” he told Sky News.