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Bracknell Forest is #OpenForBusiness

Fruit and vegetable stand with trader

We are urging the community to shop local and support our high streets as shops, restaurants and cafes start to open after the initial peak of the coronavirus pandemic.

To tie in with this request, we are launching an #OpenForBusiness campaign to support shops and the hospitality industry as they begin to recover.

A number of non-essential stores at The Lexicon in Bracknell town centre, Crowthorne High Street and Sandhurst High Street have re-opened with social distancing measures in place. We will be showcasing retailers around the borough on social media over the coming weeks to encourage residents to think local, shop local and support local.

Some of our local hospitality traders have responded to the coronavirus by changing to offer online ordering and delivery services. Others have remained closed throughout lockdown. To help traders get back on their feet, we are offering all businesses support in areas such as street cafe licences over the coming weeks as they adjust to the new rules.

In the coming months we will look at how a £108,000 grant for High Street recovery could be used to help shops across the borough and boost the local economy.

Cllr Marc Brunel Walker, Executive Member for Economic Development and Regeneration, said:

“Many retailers in the borough are now open, and some are reporting wonderful support from residents. There has been a necessary shift during the pandemic to online shopping, but we are running this #OpenForBusiness campaign to remind residents that it is safe to shop locally and important to support our shops as they recover.

“As part of our social and economic recovery from the initial wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, I’d urge everyone to shop local and support our borough’s traders who are working hard to operate with social distancing and hygiene measures in place.

“Thank you to all our retailers for all of their efforts to serve our residents safely. We look forward to the reopening of our hospitality industry in the coming weeks as we slowly return to a new normal.”

Anyone visiting shops or cafes and restaurants is encouraged to wear a face mask or covering, where appropriate, keep a safe social distance from others at all times, and follow the hygiene and safety measures retailers have in place. Anyone with coronavirus symptoms should not visit shops or eateries but should instead stay at home, isolate and get tested.