Southport BID CEO Rachel Fitzgerald is calling on people to support local businesses as they reopen over the next few months.

The Prime Minister yesterday revealed his ‘roadmap out of lockdown’, setting out when non-essential shops, pubs, restaurants, gyms, attractions and other businesses can reopen.

Under Boris Johnson’s roadmap shops, hairdressers and pubs can look forward to reopening from April 12 at the earliest – the same time gyms can get back up and running – as long as the Covid vaccination programme is continuing to operate well and Coronavirus cases keep falling.

Over 17million adults in the UK have already received their vaccines.

Southport BID CEO Rachel Fitzgerald said: “The last few months have been incredibly tough for local people and local businesses. We have all had to put our lives on hold in a collective effort to bring down Covid infection rates, to protect our local community and our local NHS, and to save lives.

“Monday’s announcement from the Prime Minister now gives everyone a proposed way out of lockdown and how our economy in Southport can cautiously reopen over the coming weeks and months.

“When our shops, restaurants, offices, gyms and other businesses do finally reopen, shopping locally and spending locally will be vitally important.

“Please do all you can to support the excellent businesses we have here in Southport.

“Many local firms, such as essential shops, are already open, while others are operating online services.

“Through our Southport BID  website and social media sites we will be focusing on driving forward the ‘Shop Local’ campaign, we will be doing all we can to promote what we have here in Southport.

“There will be much for people to look forward to.

“The substantial initiative to provide sparkling new lights along the entire length of Lord Street is nearing completion, which will help to create a lovely ambience for the night-time economy in the town centre.

“Southport BID has worked closely with Sefton Council to support the Southport Deal submission to the Government.

“Advance funding of £900,000 from the Town Deal, alongside £500,000 from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, is currently funding the transformation of Southport Market into an exciting new food, drink and events space, which is due to open this Spring.

“We recently launched the new Southport Gift Card, which is a great way of supporting local businesses and is already accepted in over 80 shops, restaurants, bars and attractions in Southport. Our ambition is that all BID businesses will take part in the Gift Card programme.

“Southport Gift Card  makes the perfect present for friends or family you may have missed during lockdown.

“The future of Southport is in your hands. It is our town and it is us who have the power to make Southport prosper.

“Our relationship with our town is a two-way street. The town will give us as much as we put in.

“Please do all you can to invest in Southport at this crucial time, by spending locally.”



Stage two

No earlier than 12 April:

  • All shops allowed to open
  • Restaurants and pub gardens will be allowed to serve customers sitting outdoors, including alcohol
  • Gyms and spas can reopen for individuals and households
  • Hairdressers, beauty salons and other “close contact services” can reopen
  • UK “staycations” away from home permitted, with self-contained accommodation able to reopen for use by members of the same household
  • Children allowed to attend indoor play activities, with up to 15 parents or guardians allowed to join them
  • Zoos, theme parks and drive-in cinemas can reopen
  • Libraries and community centres can reopen
  • Weddings attended by up to 15 people can take place

Stage three

No earlier than 17 May:

  • People can meet in groups of up to 30 outdoors
  • Six people or two households can meet indoors
  • Up to 30 people can meet to celebrate weddings or other life events, like christenings
  • Remaining outdoor entertainment, such as outdoor theatres and cinemas can open
  • Indoor entertainment such as museums, theatres, cinemas and children’s play areas can open
  • Performances and large events will be subject to limits though. For indoor events they can be at half capacity or 1,000 people, and outdoors they can be at half capacity or 4,000 people – whichever is lower. For large venues (at least 40,000 capacity) up to 10,000 will be allowed to attend
  • Hotels, hostels and B&Bs can reopen to household groups
  • International travel will resume no earlier than 17 May
  • Adult indoor group sports and exercise classes can start up again

Stage four

No earlier than 21 June:

  • All legal limits on social contact will be removed
  • No legal limits on the number of people who can attend weddings, funerals and other life events. From April, the government will run pilots for events such as large weddings, festivals and work conferences. This will help to determine how measures such as enhanced testing might allow large groups to attend without social distancing
  • Nightclubs will be allowed to reopen

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