Shoppers flock to B&Q in Blackpool after hardware retailer reopens 155 UK branches amid lockdown
There were queues outside B&Q in Blackpool this morning after shoppers rushed to visit the DIY retailer following its temporary closure due to Covid-19.
Shoppers have flocked to B&Q in Blackpool after the hardware retailer reopened its doors on Wednesday (April 22).
Photos taken at the front of the store this morning (April 24) show large queues outside the retailer, with people separated in a designated queuing area made of tape and palettes.
B&Q has reopened 155 of its UK stores after temporarily closing all of its branches due to coronavirus on March 24.
A spokesperson for B&Q said: "As an essential retailer, we’re committed to providing the best possible service to support customers’ home improvement needs at this difficult time, while keeping customers and colleagues safe.
"Having watched other essential retailers support social distancing in their stores, we are now following their best practice and are re-opening some stores with strict social distancing measures in place."
B&Q initially offered an online-only service to help protect staff and customers, meaning shoppers could only choose between home delivery and click and collect.
However, after a trial at 14 stores at the weekend, 61 outlets reopened on Wednesday (April 22) and another 80 on Thursday (April 23).
B&Q has introduced "social distancing controls", such as capping the number of customers in-store, and fitting perspex screens to checkouts.
The stores will also have two metre floor markers throughout, and services such as kitchen and bathroom design, paint mixing, timber cutting and key cutting will not be available for the time being.
B&Q added: "In recognition of the importance of Trade customers being able to carry out repairs and maintenance for their customers, TradePoint is available at all re-opened stores and our Trade customers are also able to purchase products online at trade-point.co.uk.
"We’re urging all customers to follow the Government’s social distancing guidelines, to shop responsibly only for what is necessary and to be patient whilst we give them the best possible service in the safest possible way."
The government has stated you should only leave the house for very limited purposes:
- shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible.
- one form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle - alone or with members of your household.
- any medical need, including to donate blood, avoid or escape risk of injury or harm, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person.
- travelling for work purposes, but only where you cannot work from home.
These reasons are exceptions - even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are two metres apart from anyone outside of your household.
For more information about social distancing, click HERE.