Street marshals keeping high streets Covid-secure in Cornwall

23 July 2020, 15:54

By Andy Ballantyne

Street marshals who have been patrolling Cornwall's high streets have proven to be "invaluable" to businesses, residents have said.

People visiting town centres in Cornwall since coronavirus lockdown measures were lifted have given the thumbs-up to the new wardens ensuring people's safety.

With a high proportion of elderly residents needing to travel on public transport to get into towns like Camborne, local authorities have done everything they can to alleviate people's anxieties about leaving their homes.

The street marshals, described as "invaluable" by local business owners, are on hand at the busiest times of the day to give friendly and helpful advice to those visiting and working in some of the towns and cities.

Due to the newly-established Covid-safe measures, such as one-way signage on pavements and reminders to follow social distancing, many high streets are looking significantly different in order to give confidence to anyone visiting.

Dan, who is working as a street warden in Camborne, said: “I especially like helping reassure some of our older residents.

“I’ve got to know the local businesses and it’s great to know they’re all really keen to do what they can to make their customers and staff feel comfortable.

“So far, most visitors have been really co-operative and do their best to follow the guidelines and respect social distancing."

Street marshals are ensuring Cornwall's high streets are Covid-secure
Street marshals are ensuring Cornwall's high streets are Covid-secure. Picture: LBC News

The marshals have given guidance to cafes, restaurants, pubs and hotels about ensuring social distancing and have advised street traders and others, such as hair braiders, about being Covid-secure

They have also worked with community safety and police teams to help prevent anti-social behaviour.

Their presence is a reminder to everyone to be considerate, responsible and patient, as the measures are in place to ensure people’s safety and protection.

A shopper named Jo said having the wardens present helps encourage more people to shop in the town.

Sharron Lipscombe-Manley owns a shop called Delight to Bite which, due to its size, can only have two people in at any one time, meaning customers have to queue outside.

She welcomed the street marshals with open arms: “They’ve been invaluable, sorting out any problems with people not adhering to social distancing.

“You won’t get a nicer town than Camborne, they’re nice guys as well. We’re a happy town with a great mix of independent shops mingled in with high street brands and a level town with no hillclimbing.

"With the help of the street marshals, I am confident about the future.”

The wardens have tried to keep changes to a minimum in order to maintain the town's charming appeal and to keep it accessible, which included fixing a pinch-point outside a pharmacist where long queues formed while people waited to collect their prescriptions.

Some of the on-street parking bays are coned off so people are not forced out into the traffic when trying to maintain social distancing.

Rose Hitchins-Todd, the engagement officer for Camborne Town Council, is involved in making sure the town is safe and that people have confidence in shopping.

“It feels really good actually, there are still people shielding and keeping away," she said.

"Those who do come are spending their money and there’s a really good atmosphere and the street wardens are helping us get that message that we care and giving that helping hand to get the message across.”

“We can’t wait to welcome you to Cornwall and our towns.”