// BRC says decision to reopen all shops will “help keep Christmas a festive occasion for everyone”
// PM Boris Johnson last night confirmed plans for end of 4-week lockdown in England
// News comes as Northern Ireland prepares to enter two-week lockdown on Nov 27
The BRC has said retailers will be “relieved” in light of the government’s confirmation that all shops will be able to reopen at the end of England’s four-week lockdown next week.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson addressed the nation last night in a press conference outlining plans for the end of England’s national lockdown.
From Wednesday December 2, all “non-essential” retailers will be able to open across England, with an updated localised tier system put into place.
“Retailers will be relieved by the government’s confirmation that all shops can reopen once the current restrictions are lifted,” BRC chief executive Helen Dickinson said.
“SAGE data has always highlighted that retail is a safe environment, and firms have spent hundreds of millions on safety measures including perspex screens, additional cleaning, and social distancing and will continue to follow all safety guidance.
“As a result, customers can be reassured that retail premises are Covid-secure and safe to visit over the festive period. While retailers have stepped up their online delivery over the course of 2020, the bulk of Christmas shopping tends to be done in store.
“The government’s decision to keep all of retail open will help to preserve jobs and the economy and help keep Christmas a festive occasion for everyone.”
Across the UK, lockdowns have been put into place in an attempt to stop the spread of coronavirus this winter.
Wales lifted its 17-day firebreak shutdown earlier this month, where non-essential retailers have since reopened.
Some 11 council areas across Scotland – including Glasgow – started a three-week lockdown last Friday, and from November 27, all of Northern Ireland will enter a two-week lockdown where “non-essential” retail will be forced to shut.