Boris Johnson announces June 15th re-opening date for shops in England

25 May 2020, 19:23

The Prime Minister announced his plans to the nation
The Prime Minister announced his plans to the nation. Picture: PA
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Thousands of high street shops, department stores and shopping centres across England could open again from June 15th, Boris Johnson has announced.

Boris Johnson set out his plans for the staged reopening of shops in England at his Downing Street press conference.

The Prime Minister said: "We will set out our formal assessment of the five tests that we set for adjusting the lockdown later this week as part of the three-weekly review we are legally required to undertake by Thursday.

The Prime Minister has set out plans for outdoor markets and car showrooms will to be able to reopen from 1 June, as soon as they are able to meet the Government's Covid-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers.

He said as with garden centres, the risk of transmission of the virus is lower in these outdoor and more open spaces. Car showrooms often have significant outdoor space and it is generally easier to apply social distancing.

The Prime Minister said new guidance was being published for the retail sector "detailing the measures they should take to meet the necessary social distancing and hygiene standards".

"Shops now have the time to implement this guidance before they reopen," he said.

"This will ensure there can be no doubt about what steps they should take."

Boris Johnson said the authorities would "have the powers we need to enforce compliance where that is required".

"I want people to be confident that they can shop safely provided they follow the social distancing rules for all premises," he added.

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The Prime Minister announced "non-essential retail" including shops selling clothes, shoes, toys, furniture, books, and electronics, plus tailors, auction houses, photography studios, and indoor markets, will be expected to be able to reopen from 15 June if the Government’s five tests are met and they follow the Covid-19 secure guidelines, giving them three weeks to prepare.

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Shops such as supermarkets and pharmacies have remained open trading throughout the pandemic.

The PM said businesses will only be able to open from these dates once they have completed a risk assessment, in consultation with trade union representatives or workers, and are confident they are managing the risks.

They must have taken the necessary steps to become Covid-19 secure in line with the current Health and Safety legislation.