Shoppers delighted to be back as many Alnwick retailers reopen after latest lockdown
Shoppers have been celebrating the reopening of many retail outlets in Alnwick town centre following the end of the latest lockdown.
The return of non-essential retail shops, along with beauty salons, gyms and hairdressers, made the town centre noticeably busier than it has been in recent weeks.
Among the shoppers was Mayor of Alnwick, Lynda Wearn, who said: “I am absolutely delighted the shops are open again, although it’s a real shame hospitality businesses have not been able to.
"I do understand the pressure on hospitals but it seems unfair to me to be in Tier 3 with those additional restrictions when we have got lower rates than some areas in Tier 2.
"It’s a very important time of the year now for retail and we are very lucky to have so many independents but they are small businesses with small margins so I hope people will go out and support them.”
Marie Harbottle, from Swarland, was out doing a spot of Christmas shopping.
“It’s been fine,” she said. “I thought it would be really busy but it’s steady.”
Vera Murphy, from Alnwick, was enjoying the chance to wander around the town and admire the attractive Christmas displays.
“It’s nice to come out and have a look around.” she said. "A lot of people have done a wonderful job in making their shops look beautiful in the run up to Christmas so I congratulate them on that. I think it really does cheer people up.
"I’ve been out regularly, even during the lockdown, as I think the town feels very safe.”
Norma Donohoe, from Alnwick, added: “It’s been nice to have a look around, especially in the charity shops which have been closed.
"The town was dead before so it’s good to see it a bit busier now.”
Friends Hannah Patten and Rebecca Charlton were enjoying a leisurely stroll around the Market Place.
"We’re supporting local shops where we can, although I have done a fair bit of my shopping online,” said Rebecca.
Hannah added: “I would have liked to have done more local shopping but it’s not been an easy thing to do with lockdown.”