SHOPPERS at Solihull’s town and village centres will need to ‘manage risk’ as non-essential stores re-open next week, the council leader warns.
Councillor Ian Courts said they should not expect a return to business as usual.
Instead, he is advising them to expect queuing and ‘enforced social distancing’.
He said in a newsletter: “On Monday, we reach another welcome milestone in our cautious journey out of lockdown, as our shops re-open.
“But we need to manage our expectations of our town centres as they will not be the same as you remember them.
“The virus is still amongst us. The number of people infected might be reducing, but there is still a risk of spreading the virus.
“The majority of people across the country have not had Covid-19, and so remain at risk. Managing this crisis is all about managing risk.
“Social distancing is crucial to stopping the virus spreading, and the more people you have contact with, the more you risk being exposed to the virus.
“You should not be in groups of more than six people and even then, you must keep a two metre distance to stay safe.
“If you have had contact with someone who then tests positive, you will need to self-isolate for two weeks. If you have any symptoms, do not leave home unless it’s to get tested.
“The NHS Test and Trace service can then contact those who test positive and identify anyone who has come into contact with them, and ask them to self-isolate, so that we can stop the spread of the virus.
“If you need to visit Solihull, Knowle, Shirley or Chelmsley Wood Shopping Centre, do be prepared for enforced social distancing and inevitable queuing.
“It would help if you shop alone or as with as few people from your household as possible, and please be considerate to shop keepers and assistants as the social distancing rules will mean shopping may take longer!”