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.
Wycombe Swan Summer Youth Project is back for 2022
Returning for the first time since 2019, this year sees the return of Wycombe Swan’s Summer Youth Project. Running since 1993, numerous participants have gone on to have successful careers both on and off stage. Join us on our next adventure! Build confidence, develop skills, have fun, and make long-lasting friendships.
About Wycombe Swan Summer Youth Project (SYP)
Over the two-week project, Wycombe Swan comes alive to the sights and sounds of 150 young people doing everything they can to put on a full-scale musical in time for curtain up!
Participants have the option of taking to the stage as a performer, or to make magic happen as part of the Technical Team.
All performances take place on our main stage in the 1,000 seated Wycombe Swan Theatre.
Only those wishing to have a principal/speaking role or be a dance captain need to audition.
Big Fish The Show
This year, the show is BIG FISH. Based on the novel by Daniel Wallace and the acclaimed film directed by Tim Burton.
AUDITIONS (FOR THOSE WISHING TO HAVE A SPEAKING ROLE): Sunday 22 May
DATES: Mon 15 to Sunday 28 August
AGES: 9-21 (performers). 14-21 (technical team)
It is our wish that no young person misses out due to financial constraints. For this reason, we offer bursaries of up to 100% so that anybody can take part.
TO APPLY, AND FOR MORE INFO: Visit https://wycombeswan.co.uk/Online/summerproject
APPLICATION DEADLINE: Friday 13 May
The Chequers in Woolmer Green reopens after refurbishment
Wells & Co’s Hertfordshire based pub, The Chequers, is opening its doors after an extensive refurbishment. Completed works include an entirely refreshed bar and dining area, redecorated throughout to create a modern and chic look and feel to the pub located in the civil parish village of Woolmer Green. The cosy interior boasts an intimate lounge area, large dining area and an extensive garden makeover inclusive of heated spaces and high table fire pits, perfect for those late-Summer evenings.
Upstairs has been reconfigured to make room for four en-suite bedrooms for guests to book, as well as a private dining room holding up to 20 people. The new dining room is perfect for all event needs, whether its a private party, private function or even to host a work meeting.
The updated food menu features seasonal and fresh dishes inclusive of much loved pub classics like fish and chips or the ever popular 21-day aged beef burger, where the team will also be donating 25p of every burger sold to local primary school St Michael’s. Aloingside the classics the full dining menu at The Chequers includes more indulgent dishes such as cajun sweet potato, okra, and black-eyed pea gumbo, wild porcini mushroom, truffle and ricotta filled mezzaluna pasta and new daily specials.
There is also a great new range of drinks behind the bar including a range of tasty Brewpoint beers brewed just down the road in Bedford, as well as a full wine and spirits list for guests to enjoy.
Greg Knox, General Manager for the Wells & Co. site said, “The Chequers has, quite simply put, been a transformational refurbishment. The pub is ready, our food is prepped, drinks will be flowing, and our team are on hand to welcome the people of Woolmer Green and beyond, back to their much-loved pub. I can’t wait to personally welcome everyone back.”
To book a room or table at The Chequers visit the website here: https://chequerswoolmergreen.co.uk/
Ware Festival’s Rock in the Priory line up has been confirmed
After a two year break, Rock in the Priory 2022 is back and will be at its usual location on the Priory Island on Sunday, 17th July.
Showcase auditions were held at Southern Maltings on the April 10th and helped determine the line-up for the main event. The organisers are grateful to all the musicians who came along to perform.
The high standard of performances made the selection process difficult. The seven bands and three acoustic acts who will be entertaining the crowds on July 17th are listed below.
Quivering Lip are a two-piece originals and cover band playing rock and brit pop anthems. Quivering Lip wrote and recorded their first 5 track album Generation Panic in 2018, following it up with a new release “Ashes” in April 2019.
Uptown Punk are a high energy, 5-piece pop/punk band, covering fan favourites from 90s to present. Their set is full of well known pop/punk tunes, with a bit of Rock thrown in. Artists covered include; Blink 182, Green Day, The Offspring, Foo Fighters, Sum 41 and many more.
Grace is a singer, pianist and songwriter based in Hertfordshire specialising in acoustic pop, golden oldies, jazz and much more. Take a moment to listen/watch her Thinking Out Loud cover.
Other artists performing at Ware Festival’s Rock in the Priory include Adam Fearn, Mr No Face, Back to the 50s, George Croucher, Junkyard Dolls, Second Bite, The Routine.
Ware Festival and Rock in the Priory
The last Rock in the Priory was held in 2019. This annual event is known for its excellent atmosphere and energy. It takes place in the unique setting of the Island bandstand, nestled within seven acres of picturesque riverside gardens of the 14th century Ware Priory building. Tickets in advance are £5 entry or a family ticket at £15 for two adults and up to four children. Further details about Ware Festival and Rock in the Priory can be found on rockinthepriory.co.uk