Shopping in lockdown: How councils and police are keeping people safe

A police car patrols the town centre Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

A police car patrols the town centre Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

As town centres across Suffolk open again, the public are being urged to stay safe in shops and on the street.

In Ipswich, shoppers have this week been queuing in the sun to get into the newly reopened Primark, JD Sports and Pandora, as well as businesses already open such as banks and food outlets.

In some places, narrow streets or large numbers of people have made social distancing especially difficult, so the Safer Places group – made up of members from the emergency services, councils and NHS that form the Suffolk Resilience Forum – are rolling out extra measures to stop the number of infections in the county rising.

Part of the work already announced by the group includes parking enforcement teams keeping streets free so traffic can flow and stopping people parking on pavements or areas being used by pedestrians.

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It is expected that more people will be using car parks and motorists are asked to also play their part by acting responsibly and following measures in place.

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David Collinson, the lead for the Safer Places group, said: “The safety of our communities is the most important thing as our high streets and businesses recover.

“Ultimately, businesses are responsible for ensuring the safety of their staff and customers, but through the Safer Places group, we’re doing everything we can to support them and help reduce the risk of infection.

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“Everyone has a role to play in making sure that we all can keep safe and support our local Suffolk businesses.

“These measures will be constantly reviewed and are completely new for everyone taking part so are likely to change and evolve.

“Please help by following the measures or having a polite word with a business if you think they can improve.

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“Suffolk has successfully slowed the spread of the virus, but we must all stick with it and keep following the guidance.”

The work of the Safer Places group will focus mostly on small spaces in towns and villages across Suffolk where social distancing will be most difficult.

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