Organisations have been working together to ensure Daventry town centre and other shopping areas in the District are safe places to visit as more retailers start to reopen this week.
Non-essential shops such as those selling clothes, accessories or electrical items can reopen from today (Monday 15 June) as the Government eases lockdown measures.
Partners including the Daventry Retail Forum, Daventry Town Council (DTC), Daventry District Council (DDC), and local businesses want shoppers to have confidence in returning to the town centre, and have put in place a range of measures to help retailers operate safely and in line with social distancing guidance.
New signage around the town centre will remind people to be kind and considerate of other shoppers and to maintain the required 2-metre distance when out and about.
View a range of advice to help different businesses reopen safely
The Council’s Environmental Health Officers have been providing detailed guidance to retailers on safe practices. Officers from DTC and DDC have also surveyed the town to identify any pinch points where social distancing might be more difficult, and to help manage any queuing arrangements which might be necessary.
The Town Council’s Community Ranger will be working in the town centre in partnership with the town’s CCTV Control Room, and will help give shoppers a friendly reminder of the social distancing guidelines if needed, as well as assisting businesses to manage queues where needed.
DDC has also been working with other retailers and organisations around the District to help village businesses reopen.
The arrangements which have put in place will also help prepare for the reopening of other businesses such as restaurants, bars, hairdressers, and nail salons, which will open no earlier than 4 July.
Councillor Lynne Taylor, Mayor of Daventry, said: "A lot of work has been carried out by a range of partners ahead of this week to ensure that our town centre is as safe as possible for shoppers. We have already reopened the Market safely and successfully, and people should have confidence to return to the other retailers that will be reopening this week."
Councillor Richard Auger, Leader of Daventry District Council, said: "We have been pleased to work with local retailers and our other partners to help shopping areas across the District to reopen safely and responsibly. Independent retailers are the lifeblood of our local economy and this is an important step toward getting many of them back on their feet after what has been an incredibly difficult time for everyone.
"While these additional freedoms are very much welcomed I would urge people visiting shopping areas across our District to do their bit by being kind and considerate to others, and by obeying the social distancing measures that have been put in place for everyone’s protection."
Lorna White, Co-ordinator for the Daventry Retail Forum, said: "Daventry people are deciding what kind of life they want for themselves and their families – a fully digital life or one that includes social interaction and the pleasure of a friendly local shopping and dining experience.
"Independent shops often offer quirky and unusual items, as well as the convenience of having the item immediately, together with any specialist advice or on-going support. Shopping locally in independent stores also means that the money stays local, supporting the local economy.
"Social distancing and other safety measures are in place throughout Daventry town centre and we can all feel safe to venture out to support local business."
Find out more on our reopening businesses web page