Town set to welcome back shoppers safely

Published Tuesday, 09 June 2020

Towns across the borough are preparing to welcome back more shoppers by making a number of practical changes designed to help safeguard shopper and trader safety as lockdown restrictions continue to ease.

From 15 June more shops are expected to be able to trade including those selling clothes, furniture, shoes and toys. 

The Borough Council and Hinckley BID have been working hard behind the scenes with local businesses to ensure Hinckley and other town centres around the borough are safe places for customers, traders and staff.

In Hinckley town centre various methods are being employed to help people stay socially distant while they shop. Floor markings have been stencilled outside shops to mark safe queuing areas and in Hinckley ‘high street helper’ stewards will be on hand daily to help people and monitor the situation. Hand sanitising stations are freely available for public use.

The pavement area along Station Road - the busy pedestrian thoroughfare between Castle Street and The Crescent in the town - will be temporarily widened into the short stay parking bays in order to make sure there is sufficient pavement width for people to socially distance safely from queuing shoppers and other pedestrians without having to step out onto the road.

There are alternative 30 minute free parking bays available nearby on St Marys Road, Market Place and Regent Street as well as on Upper Castle Street. 

Shoppers are also reminded you can park for free after 3pm every day in three town centre car parks – Trinity East (on Rugby Rd opposite Dominoes), Castle (the former co-op car park off Hill Street) and Lower Bond Street (opposite the Atkins Building). St Mary’s Road Car Park and Church Walk Car Park are also free after 3pm on Saturdays only.  Additionally, parking is free in all council car parks on Sundays and bank holidays.

Meanwhile, for the convenience of shoppers and visitors, Station Road public toilets are set to reopen from Monday 15 June. In line with current government guidance, only two people will be permitted inside at a time and the facility will be deep cleaned every 30 minutes. The council has also invested in new infection control friendly features including sensor activated taps to reduce contact points.

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council Leader Stuart Bray said:

We are all keen to return to normality and this is a very welcome step, but we know it is critical that we all maintain social distancing while doing so for the sake of everyone’s safety and peace of mind. Redesigning the town centre into a covid-19 secure shopping area at time when rules are constantly changing has been a challenge for us all, but we must continue to adapt and be flexible in order to ensure the safety and vitality of our residents and businesses. I’d urge visitors to please support our local businesses, but to do so safely by following the guidance.