Mansfield businesses hail road to reopening as 'good news'

Shops and business leaders in Mansfield have hailed re-opening plans as ‘positive news’ and a ‘sensible step.’

The comments come after Boris Johnson announced a four-step approach to lifting restrictions by June 21.

Alternative shop The Underworld, on Bridge Street, Mansfield, is run by Neil and Charlene Parish.

Charlene said: "It’s great news, it is positive, we'll soon be seeing our customers in the shop again, our regulars are like family to us.

Charlene and Neil Parish

"We’ve been on furlough, this is the light at the end of the tunnel. We have three members of staff, it’ll be good for them to be back. I am looking forward to seeing everyone.”

A spokesperson for Blooming Wonderful, a flower shop on Leeming Street said: "It'll be good to know that things are going back to normal, hopefully! It's great news, as long as we all stay safe, it is no good opening otherwise.

"The pandemic has impacted us, but not as badly as other businesses. We've at least managed to keep going with our online flower sale and unfortunately a lot of funerals.

Gary Jordan

"We’re only a little company, but I'm glad we were able keep on our four staff. It has been terrible for lots of local pubs and restaurants and other businesses in the area.”

Gary Jordan, Chair of Mansfield and Ashfield 2020 Business Group, said: “My view is that the approach is sensible. It’ll give people time to plan for business re-opening and to ensure a level of caution is maintained.

"I am totally bemused by how negative some in the education world are as there has been talk of opening schools on March 8 since Christmas. If schools were businesses they would have gone bust by now.

"I can’t see why we have to wait for hairdressers as they have safe spaces, but I would like to see a ban on gyms until this is all over. Bars and restaurants could have had more license to open earlier, they have very rigid social distance and hygiene protocols, better than supermarkets I’d say. The opening for bars and pubs with an outdoor venue is great but many don’t have this luxury.

“I will be watching to see what happens in London particularly, as they have little space and often have many punters out on the street.”