All shops in England, regardless of what they sell, will be able to open with social distancing measures in place from the middle of June. Retailers across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, and Hertfordshire have been working on plans to enable social distancing and reduce the chances of coronavirus transmission via clothing and other items that are on sale in their stores.
You can also help reduce the chances of coronavirus transmission with some simple changes to your shopping behaviour. Here are our 8 Social Distancing tips for shoppers:
1. Keep your distance
It’s very important to follow the government rules about social distancing while out & about. Many shops and retail outlets are limiting the number of people in their stores and have distancing stickers near the entrance and tills to make sure shoppers stay two metres apart whilst queuing. However, it’s also important to make sure you maintain the same distance while walking around the shop. Don’t reach across or stand close to someone while picking your products from shelves or fridges, and if an aisle looks crowded, come back to it later in your shop.
2. If a shop looks too busy, wait outside or come back later
While most retail outlets are introducing one in/one out policies to limit the number of shoppers in their stores, some smaller shops have not introduced this yet or may find it hard to enforce. If your favourite shops look too crowded to allow you to stay two metres away from other shoppers, wait outside until it’s quieter or shop elsewhere.
Many of the major supermarkets offer a click and collect service which could help limit your time queuing and in store, although with increasing demand, available collection slots are becoming more difficult to come by.
So don’t limit yourself to the big supermarkets – many local food shops are allowing people to call and place orders ahead of time to limit how long they need to spend in their stores, so check whether this is the case for your local butcher or greengrocer and, if it is, get your order in! Lussmanns are offering this service across Hertfordshire for example.
3. Get creative with online grocery options
Although the major supermarkets are struggling to meet demand, there are other less conventional options that are still delivering to people. Many restaurants and catering suppliers are getting creative and are now delivering to households, with meat, veg and fruit boxes available for the same week.
Keep an eye on social media posts from local community groups for updates on what’s available in your area. This even applies to wine thanks to Must Wine.
4. Keep your shopping trips to a minimum
Government advice is to shop wisely – You can do this with the help of social media and at the same time, find some amazing offers. When you do venture out, plan ahead and do a full shop buying produce you can freeze so that you know the food will last you as long as possible. Remember to write a list so you don’t forget things!
5. Shop alone and quick
Don’t take the family on your shopping trips. If you’re able, shop alone to reduce the number of people in the store and minimise the risk of others catching the virus. Where possible, leave children at home. If you like to browse, keep it to a minimum and think of others waiting to shop too.
6. Take care when paying
Take care at self-checkout stations – many people will have touched the screens, so use antibacterial hand gel as soon as you’ve finished your shop. Where possible, use contactless or card payments rather than cash, which may carry germs.
Many retail outlets have installed plastic screens at the checkout to protect their employees and customers, but still be conscious of supermarket employees and keep your distance as much as possible to help protect both them and you.
7. Limit the items you touch
To help protect you and other shoppers, try to only touch the items you intend to purchase to limit the spread of germs. If you buy fresh produce, ensure you wash it thoroughly before use to help wash away any germs that may be lingering.
Be careful about which surfaces you touch – it’s understood the virus that causes COVID-19 can persist on surfaces from a few hours up to a couple of days, so make sure you sanitise your hands as soon as possible after being out in public.
8. Remember hand hygiene
Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds both before your supermarket visit and as soon as you get home to reduce the risk of the infection spreading. It’s also worth taking an antibacterial hand gel with you and using it as soon as you leave the store. Finally, try not to touch your face – this is harder than it may seem but important, particularly before you’ve washed your hands.
The Hub Milton Keynes hosts our May #lunchNbloggers event
The TrendLife Magazine team are excited to announce that #lunchNbloggers is back. We have been working hard to plan something special for our first post-lockdown event so we are happy to say we have chosen The Hub Milton Keynes.
This #lunchNbloggers will be the first event that features over five dining experiences as we discover all what The Hub has to offer. Located in the heart of Milton Keynes between Midsummer Boulevard and Avebury Boulevard, The Hub is home to a wide range of popular restaurants, bars and hotels.
What to expect when #lunchNbloggers arrives at The Hub Milton Keynes
As part of The Hub #lunchNbloggers experience, we will sampling and experiencing some of the most popular dining destinations in Milton Keynes
- Bogata – We will be starting with a Meet & Great at Milton Keynes’ first speciality coffee shop
- Las Iguanas – Join us as we sample a slice of the Latin life which is on offer at The Hub
- Turtle Bay – A bottomless brunch of Caribbean inspired dishes at Turtle Bay is next on the menu
- Banana Tree – At the fabulous Banana Tree, we will be experiencing Japanese style private dining
- Blossom Room – Sticking with the Japanese theme, we will be ending the night in style at the fabulous Blossom Room. Make sure you charge your phone for those instagram stories.
As with all our #lunchNbloggers events, the masterclass is always something special and we have arranged a Yoga masterclass with a twist at Sweat Studios. Chill out, stretch out or work out – it is your choice. As with all our masterclasses, everything you need will be provided.
About The Hub Milton Keynes
The Hub is a vibrant restaurant, cafe, hotel and lifestyle quarter in the very heart of Milton Keynes.
Register for #lunchNbloggers
#lunchNbloggers has always been and will remain FREE to attend. We occasionally ask for a small deposit to ensure those who are selected attend notify us in advance so we can offer this exclusive opportunity to another member of the #lunchNbloggers team. To register for this event, please complete the form below and remember to follow us on instagram for updates.
Thursday 27th May 2021
From Midday until late.
If you wish to attend but cannot take part in the Yoga masterclass, please let us know when you register.
Residents have voted on what is missing in Hitchin Town Centre
Just two years ago, Hitchin Town Centre had been named as a finalist in the Great British High Street Awards 2019. Despite losing out on the crown, Hitchin Town Centre has remained one of the more popular destinations in Hertfordshire. As times and demands change, town centres and high streets across Hertfordshire also need to change to meet the demands of residents and visitors coming from out of town.
As residents return to the cobbled streets around the town centre, we asked the question… ‘what is missing from Hitchin Town Centre?’ In total, we had over 200 individual responses with 40 different suggestions.
Here are the top ten things missing from Hitchin Town Centre.
From 10 to 1, below is a list of the top things voted for by Hitchin residents. Some notable responses that did not make the top ten include a Vietnamese restaurant, a gin bar, toy shop, escape room and art gallery.
10. McDonalds/KFC 2%
Would local residents really stomach a McDonalds in Hitchin Town Centre? Would Colonel Sanders be welcomed with open arms? These two fast food giants may bring the Big Mac, finger licking’ chicken and employment but what about the litter and UberEats riders? There are a number of issues that come hand in hand with today’s fast food giants.
9. Record store 3%
Owning music in a psychical format had been on a steady decline since 2010. However, nearly 5 million LPs were purchased in the UK last year alone. Most of these have been online but is there an opportunity for a savvy Hitchin entrepreneur to create a nostalgic record store experience?
8. Live outdoor entertainment 3%
Who doesn’t like getting out and experiencing live outdoor entertainment? Well, in most cases, councils don’t and they tend to be the decision makers on events in public spaces. Post-covid would be ideal for live outdoor entertainment to return to Hitchin Town Centre. The market place offers the space and Hitchin does have plenty of local talent.
7. Vegan restaurant 3%
With plant-based food businesses, festivals, and pop-ups booming, it’s clear that veganism is become a global phenomenon. Because of this changing trend, some larger towns and cities can boast of vegan only restaurants. A Hitchin vegan restaurant could become a reality soon as the demand is clearly there.
6. Independent book store 5%
Picking up 5% of votes, an independent Hitchin book store would probably struggle given that Waterstones is positioned in such a good place but Waterstones itself is currently in a battle online giant Amazon. Independent book stores tend to be more quirky and with the right ‘keeper of books’ behind the till, the experience of buying a book in person is a lot more rewarding than hear the thud of delivery hitting the passage floor.
For the remaining things missing in Hitchin, watch our video below and don’t forget to subscribe.
St Albans favourites deny rumours of new High Street in the sky
Late on Tuesday night, three high profile businesses in St Albans were forced to release statements denying involvement in the launch of a Super High Street above St Albans.
Three of the so called St Albans ‘Big Six’ – Chloe James Lifestyle, Must Wine Bar and Mad Squirrel – have all put out statements denying rumours they plan to create a new St Albans High. The remaining three are expected to make statements in the next 24 hours.
The announcement of a new St Albans High Street has caused enormous uproar across Hertfordshire and beyond, with near universal disbelief from shoppers, local residents and politicians – including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Unconfirmed plans suggest a monorail system will be constructed to take shoppers from the iconic clock tower to the yet-to-be confirmed new St Albans High Street somewhere above St Albans Cathedral.
Donna Nichol, owner of the popular independent fashion store Chloe James Lifestyle has issued a statement.
“I have absolutely no idea where this has come from and ironically, I cannot see it getting off the ground. We have been welcoming back our customers and have enjoyed the buzz of a busy shop. Why would I want to move my store 30 feet above St Albans?
I have just recently updated the shop window with a new French brand called FRNCH – how will anyone see it? Ignore the rumours and find us where we have been keeping St Albans fashionable for the last ten years.”
Mad Squirrel St Albans have also put out a strong worded statement in response to news of the Super High Street. General Manager James has gone on record and said “Of the 25 beers we have on tap, nothing is that strong”.
“We have been here in St Albans for almost two years and whilst we are accustomed to hearing the occasional bit of nonsense in the taproom, this idea is farcical. Beer and heights don’t mix so we will remain on the ground floor of St Albans in Heritage Close serving the finest beers to St Albans residents.”
Mad Squirrel has quickly established itself as one of the predominant beer destinations in St Albans. With access from the footpath towards the Abbey, it would seem a strange decision from management but when you are around beer all day, anything can happen.
Local resident Isabelle Ringing who we interviewed shopping in St Albans said the idea was nonsense. “St Albans is unique and residents love it the way it is. Why? a monorail? I just can’t get my head around it – we don’t need this nonsense in St Albans.”
Must Wine located on George Street were also quick to release a statement in regards to the rumours. Wine Steward and c0-owner Mike Nuttall explained, “I get the idea – great minds drink alike and the concept of tasting the finest wines with breathtaking views of Hertfordshire is idyllic.
However, the individual who came up with the pour decision of running a monorail above St Albans is clearly on cloud wine.” Must Wine will continue run wine tasting classes on George Street.
As these rumours of a break-away high street continue to spread, the TrendLife team will continue to keep you updated with facts instead of fiction.