Keep-left social distancing system for Yate Shopping Centre as coronavirus lockdown is relaxed
A KEEP-LEFT system for walking around Yate Shopping Centre will be introduced as part of new social distancing measures.
The centre’s management says “strict” social distancing measures, which will also include some barriers and supervision by staff, will be introduced ahead of the re-opening of “non-essential” shops on June 15.
Centre manager Andrew Lowrey said: “We are not expecting a mass opening of stores on 15th June but we will know more in the next few days. There are over 20 essential stores that have traded throughout the lockdown period and the remainder will start to open their doors as and when they have made the necessary preparations to welcome shoppers safely.
“We have already announced the extensive measures to ensure Centre visitors are able to social distance and we are now helping individual shops with their plans. It is evident that the national high street retailers are focusing on a formal programme of openings with set locations first and we are yet to be advised formally about Yate openings.
“As and when we receive further information we will advise the public but our priority at the moment is to ensure that we have a well-organised system in place to help the public get around the Centre whilst adhering to the Government’s social distancing guidelines. We are pleased that the majority of our customers are following the measures that we have implemented and our message is very much help us to help you.
“We would like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to the NHS for their wonderful selfless work and also to the retailers who have continued to trade providing essential goods and services to our customers.”
The keep-left system will be in place in all pedestrian walkways and signposted. People will be able to cross lines only to visit a shop immediately opposite them.
Centre staff will "actively talk to customers" to ensure they follow the system and are agreeing queuing systems with shops.
Barriers will be in place in some areas, mainly in the centre square around Boswells.
Tesco is now operating its own queuing system from under the store, moving shoppers away from East Walk.
Mr Lowrey added: “As with any such measures, there are almost certain to be some issues so we strongly recommend that customers speak to Centre staff if they have any concerns. Working together, we can start to get operations back to a state of normality”.