Scarborough shops getting back to business - and they need your help

Shops across Scarborough forced to shut for months are finally set to raise their shutters – but they need your help.

Friday, 12th June 2020, 6:57 am

The Scarborough News is teaming up with local leaders to urge people to show their support for the high street by shopping locally.

Traders have been hard-hit by lockdown measures which forced them to close their doors in March.

As they prepare to welcome shoppers back, amidst a new way of living and with a host of new social distancing measures in place, our Time to #supportlocal campaign aims to encourage the community to visit those shops, spending locally and safely.

Westborough, in Scarborough

President of Scarborough Chamber of Trade Janet Jefferson said: “This campaign is a wonderful idea and I support it whole-heartedly.

“It’s so important that we retain our high street and the services that are there.”

From Monday a broader range of retailers will be permitted to re-open their doors, including clothes shops, toy stores, electronics retailers, booksellers and shoe shops.

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Brunswick Shopping Centre

They will have to adapt their premises to adhere to government Covid-19 social distancing and health and safety guidelines.

Mrs Jefferson said it was important that people also showed their support for the shops such as chemists, grocery shops and newsagents, that have been able to open during the lockdown.

She said those shops have provided a vital service.

She applauded businesses such as cafes and restaurants who have started offering takeaway food and drink while they are unable to seat customers inside.

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“They’ve been providing excellent services,” she said. “People have come up with some interesting ideas.”

Manager of Brunswick Shopping Centre and Chair of Scarborough Town Centre Strategy Team Sue Anderson Brown is backing the Time to #supportlocal campaign.

“Brunswick is the hub for the town centre but we don’t operate in isolation,” she said.

“It’s about opening up the town centre for all to enjoy.

“I’m hopeful that a lot of the retailers around the town centre will have the confidence to open, and the more the merrier to offer our customers and visitors to the town the choice and variety.”

She said she is delighted that the majority of the shops in Brunswick Shopping Centre will be re-opening on Monday, including Debenhams, New Look and Topshop. Next will open again on June 22.

“It is incredible because some of those retailers are not re-opening stores in other towns and cities,” she said.

“We’ve not had any retailer say they won’t be re-opening.

“This is remarkable considering the challenges the high street has faced, even pre-Covid-19.”

Mrs Anderson Brown acknowledged that some shoppers might be anxious about returning to the high street but urged them to follow the government advice about social distancing measures and be reassured that a lot of time, effort and financial support has been invested in making the centre a safe place for people to shop.

“One issue is that we’ve not been able to open are our customer toilets,” she said.

“We cannot fulfil the two-metre distance that is required because of their location.

“It’s a big concern but it has to be safety first.”