Retailers in Malmesbury have welcomed the return of shoppers to the High Street and town centre following re-opening of non-essential shops on 15 June. Many have reported an increase in customer confidence following the social distancing measures put in place by retailers and the combined efforts of Malmesbury Town Team, Malmesbury Town Council and Wiltshire Council in time for the first day of trading. Owner of The Wild Food Company, Tom Bowerman commented ‘It’s been nice to see some faces returning that we haven’t seen since lockdown. People are feeling more confident to come out and shop now the social distancing measures have been put in place in the High Street.’ Jane Powell, owner of A4 Stationers added ‘We’re so happy to see real people again. Our customers are grateful we’re open and it’s been good to have the safety measures in place so shoppers feel comfortable to come to the High Street and town centre once more. We expect arts, crafts, stationery & print supplies might be running low at home now and we’re here and ready to help.’
Malmesbury Town Team spokesperson Gordon MacPherson said ‘We are extremely lucky in Malmesbury to have so many great local independent shops and businesses and it’s fantastic to see the community supporting them. We encourage everyone to shop and spend locally and make sure we keep our unique town centre vibrant. Many retailers will have lost significant business in the last few months and are facing challenging times so it’s vital we support them. You’ve always been able to buy pretty much anything you need in Malmesbury and we should all be keen to maintain this unique aspect to our historic market town.’
Malmesbury Mayor Campbell Ritchie added ‘We are pleased the introduction of increased pedestrian space and other essential social distancing government measures have ensured the town centre is a safe and welcoming environment for shoppers and our brilliant volunteer #askme team have been on hand to answer questions and help visitors. Malmesbury Town Council is also pleased it will be opening its new public toilets in Cross Hayes Malmesbury in the next few weeks. These new toilets, which are in the final stages of fit out, will be at the fore-front of the specification needed for Covid-19 safety, with touchless wash facilities and integral sanitisers. It is also helpful our High Street and other business areas are already complemented by great spots for socially distanced picnics in Cloister Gardens and St Aldhelm’s Mead, the re-opened and stunning Abbey House Gardens and two hours free parking in our nearby Station Yard car park. With our cafes, restaurants, pubs and hotels making plans to increase opening as soon as the Government allows, Malmesbury is well on the way to being fully back in business and an even better place to visit.
Further information regarding Malmesbury Town Centre Covid-19 social distancing changes can be viewed at www.malmesbury.gov.uk.
For Abbey House Gardens tickets and opening hours please visit www.abbeyhousegardens.co.uk
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