Businesses ‘chomping at the bit’ as next stage of roadmap confirmed

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed the next stage of lockdown lifting in England will be on April 12.

Non-essential shops, hairdressers and gyms can reopen, and pubs and restaurants can start serving customers outdoors.

In a press briefing on Easter Monday evening (April 5) Mr Johnson confirmed he himself, would be heading to the pub a week today.

The news means an abundance of hospitality and retail businesses in Nottinghamshire can definitely reopen from April 12, under Covid guidance.

Boris says there is nothing in the data to stop the lockdown easing in England.

Mr Johnson said: “The net result of your efforts and of course the vaccine rollout is that I can today confirm that from Monday April 12, we will move to step two of our road map.

“Reopening shops, gyms, zoos, holiday campsites, personal care services like hairdressers and of course beer gardens and outdoor hospitality of all kinds.

“And on Monday 12, I will be going to the pub myself and cautiously but irreversibly raising a pint of beer to my lips.”

The Lash Lounge Hair and Beauty Boutique in Queens Road, Beeston.
The Lash Lounge Hair and Beauty Boutique in Queens Road, Beeston.
(Image: Joseph Raynor/ Nottingham Post)

Businesses in Nottinghamshire expressed their excitement for the official confirmation that next Monday would mean long-awaited reopenings would go ahead.

Sarah Clay, who owns the Lash Lounge Hair and Beauty Boutique in Beeston said: “Amazing news!

“Really excited to finally be able to get back to business. Hoping that we stay on track, that come June we are all open and back to living our lives.

“Our appointment books are open and clients can get booked in with us immediately. It’s a massive relief to know that our small business can continue, that we will be earning, that we will be back in the heart of the community with all our lovely clients.”

Craig Pennington, landlord of the Lord Roberts pub in Broad Street, Hockley said: “It can’t come quick enough.

“It’s been a year from hell and when your used to working 12-15 hours a day, you just want a purpose for getting up in the morning and I really can’t wait to get back to work. I feel sorry for the pubs still waiting, but it’s only another month hopefully.

“We will only be open in the evenings for now, just to ease us back in. But we’ve made a big investment in cover for our outside area and added heaters. I expect there might be a lot of queuing next week – could be our busiest Monday ever. But I’m not taking bookings, I think it just adds more work on for staff.”

(L- R) Sales assistant Helen Sadler and director Karen Mace pictured at Behind the Red Door in Weekday Cross, Nottingham
(L- R) Sales assistant Helen Sadler and director Karen Mace pictured at Behind the Red Door in Weekday Cross, Nottingham
(Image: Joseph Raynor/ Nottingham Post)

Karen Mace who owns independent gift shop, Behind the Red Door in Weekday Cross said she thought the vaccine would really make a difference to people returning to the city centre.

“It’s absolutely brilliant and the statistics we’ve had have shown that independent businesses have felt safe to customers and I know in our shop, they have been very appreciative.”

Karen said there were uncertainties of how the city centre would fare compared to villages and market towns, given that many shoppers have chosen previously to stick to their local areas.

“I think as long as the city council do their bit with signage to encourage people back in, we’ll be set,” she added.

“I really think the vaccination will have made a difference too and people will want to come back out.

“Plus we will have hospitality too, able to offer outdoor seating, which means people can make a day of it and sit down for a coffee. People have had enough now and they want to support businesses. We have lost some big names in Nottingham but hopefully that might make room for the indies.

“We are really looking forward to welcoming customers back safely – we’re chomping at the bit to get the door open.”

Mr Johnson also warned the difficulties facing countries in Europe illustrated the risks still posed by the pandemic.

He said: “We can’t be complacent. We can see the waves of sickness affecting other countries and we have seen how this story goes. We still don’t know how strong the vaccine shield will be when cases begin to rise, as I’m afraid that they will, and that’s why we are saying please get your vaccine – or your second dose – when your turn comes.”

He also encouraged people to use free NHS tests as part of the drive to identify cases without symptoms.


Nottinghamshire Live – Local News