Many Burnham-On-Sea shops, pubs and cafes are taking a cautious approach to today’s lifting of national Covid restrictions by retaining safety measures to ensure customers and staff are kept safe.
While the easing of restrictions means that many Covid measures are no longer a legal requirement, the government is still advising people to act carefully and be on the safe side.
And Burnham businesses are adopting the cautious approach amid rising cases of the Delta variant.
Emily May at May’s Cafe in Burnham’s Abingdon Street says: “Nothing in the cafè will be changing for us on July 19th. Our team will still be wearing face coverings, all tables will still be socially distanced and limited to the number of people at a table. Customers will still be asked to wait at the door to be seated to make sure tables are cleaned and sanitised. And table service only will still remain. We feel this is best to keep our team and customers safe and comfortable.”
Heidi Crook at Chatterbox Cafe in Burnham’s Victoria Street says: “We have worked really hard at Chatterbox to provide a safe welcoming environment for our customers and staff. We will not be changing the layout to the cafe. Our tables will remain distanced from each other. My team will continue to serve you at your table wearing a mask. You are not required by law to wear a face covering but we do ask every customer to be respectful and considerate towards each other. We are incredibly grateful to everyone for their continued support.”
A spokesman for Burnham-On-Sea’s Tesco supermarket in Ben Travers Way says: “Throughout the pandemic, we’ve focused on making sure everyone can get the food they need in a safe environment. While the easing of restrictions means that some safety measures will no longer be a legal requirement, we’ve listened to customers and our colleagues, and we know a lot of people remain cautious. In line with the government advice to act carefully, we feel it’s important to continue with certain measures to be on the safe side.”
“Here’s what we’re doing to make sure everyone feels as safe as possible in our stores. Please keep wearing a face covering in our stores if you can. Although the legal requirement to wear a face covering in England ends on 19 July, the government expects and recommends that people continue to wear a face covering in crowded and enclosed spaces. So we’re encouraging our colleagues and you, our customers, to continue wearing face coverings if you can.”
“We’re keeping enhanced hygiene, cleaning and safety measures in place. As before, you’ll find sanitiser and wipes at the store entrance. The screens at the checkout are staying as well. We’re keeping the traffic light system in place too, to help monitor the flow of customers and prevent overcrowding.”
Barbers and hair salons in Burnham are also taking a cautious approach.
Mike Lowe at Lowe’s Barber Shop in Burnham High Street says: “Although restrictions will be lifted on 19th July, Lowe’s have taken the decision to continue wearing a face covering in the Barber Shop & we ask that our clients also continue to do so. This is due to the ever rising number of cases within the area, but ultimately to protect you & our team. We will review this decision as & when we feel appropriate. Thank you for your support and understanding.”
Burnham hair salon No.1 Regent Street adds: “Although restrictions will be lifting on July 19th, we have made a decision as a team to continue wearing a face covering in the salon and we ask that our clients also continue to do so. We have made this decision due to the increased rate of infection, and the fact that we would have to isolate if we come into contact, as the isolation rules do not change until 17th August. This is to protect us, as well as our clients, and we hope you understand this. We will also have plenty of hand sanitizer around for you to use. We will review this over the next few weeks depending on the local number of cases.”
Pubs are taking differing approaches. JD Wetherspoon says the Reed’s Arms pub on Burnham seafront will be changing its rules, in line with its other pubs across the country. The pub chain says it will revert back to the “successful measures” it had in place last summer upon the easing of coronavirus rules. Punters will be allowed to order a pint at the bar again although they will be encouraged to use the Wetherspoons app to order meals and drinks to reduce contact. Face masks will no longer be enforced and customers and staff will be able to wear them at their discretion. Customers can also wave goodbye to the rule of six at the pub from Monday, although its test and trace system will remain on a voluntary basis. Other safety measures such as screens between tables and hand sanitiser stations will remain.