Love Your Liverpool: Everything you need to know about the reopening of Liverpool City Centre
3 years ago
Liverpool City Centre is set to re-open again on Monday after shops have been given the green light to open their doors again.
It’s still the Liverpool we know and love – but things will be different.
Liverpool ONE, Liverpool BID, Royal Albert Dock Liverpool, Liverpool City Council, Merseytravel and Merseyside Police have been working together to make the city as safe as possible when it re-opens.
And new measures because of Covid-19 have been put in place to keep people safe and socially distanced, and the city clean.
Under the new banner, Love Your Liverpool, green and purple messaging will direct people to keep to the left, keep their distance and to act responsibly to keep everyone safe.
And a brand new website has also been launched – www.loveyourliverpool.com – which gives advice and answers questions people may have if they are thinking about going shopping.
So, here’s everything you need to know about getting back into the city, and remember:
#bekind #bepatient #beresponsible #besafe #loveyourliverpool #rethinktravel
Why are shops reopening?
Liverpool is following government guidance which says that all non-essential retail can reopen from 15 June. These will include: indoor markets and tailors as well as shops selling clothes, shoes, toys, furniture, books and electronics.
What advice do you have if I’m thinking of going shopping?
This is new for us all so we are urging everyone to be responsible, safe, kind and patient.
We’d encourage you to think about whether you need to come into the city centre – is it really necessary?
If it is, ensure you abide by the guidelines in place. You may need to plan more than you normally would before heading into town – think about your journey and where exactly you want to visit when you are in the city centre.
This is the new normal – social distancing, hand washing, hand sanitisers and face coverings are now part of our routines.
It’s our job to help keep each other and our city safe and we can do just that by being responsible, patient and kind.
What health and safety measures are in place?
For several weeks there has been a huge amount of work taking place behind the scenes.
Liverpool One, Liverpool BID and the Royal Albert Dock Liverpool – which share the responsibility for all the retailers in the city centre – are working closely with those businesses that plan to re-open – ensuring they are complying with new rules and regulations.
Cleansing is a priority and a regime is in place, which will ensure the regular sanitisation of ‘high touch points’ (hand rails etc) around the city and regular deep cleaning of public areas.
What differences will I see?
Anyone who decides to come into the city centre needs to understand that it won’t be ‘shopping as usual’.
Everyone will be asked to follow simple but essential guidelines, such as:
- ‘Keep Left’ on pedestrianised streets
- Use allocated queuing zones outside shops
- Respect one-way systems where walkways aren’t wide enough for two-way pedestrian traffic
- If you need to use a lift – only people from the same household will be able to travel together – so queues are likely
- You will need to socially distance wherever possible – this includes keeping your distance from staff inside shops
There will be signage throughout the city centre to remind everyone of the guidance.
Should I wear a face covering?
Public Health England guidance says people should wear a face covering if visiting an environment where social distancing can prove difficult, of if you are in an enclosed space, such as shops. Face covers aren’t necessary when out in the open, however, if you are planning on taking public transport, it is now mandatory to wear a face covering.
Public Health England does not encourage people to buy and wear surgical masks as these should be kept for clinical settings. You can make your own easily by following this advice.
And remember, there’ll be exceptions to the face covering guidance for very young children, those with disabilities or those with breathing difficulties.
Will there be hand sanitiser available?
Individual retailers are being encouraged to make hand sanitisers available for customers.
However, it is strongly recommended that you bring your own personal hand sanitiser with you.
How often should I wash my hands?
You need to wash your hands as often as possible, particularly if you have been in a shop and touched any merchandise. Take a small hand sanitiser with you which you can use at your own convenience.
Which shops can I visit?
Not all retailers will re-open on the 15 June so check online before travelling in to the city centre. The Liverpool ONE, Liverpool BID and Royal Albert Dock Liverpool websites and social media channels will have the most up-to-date information, which will include opening times.
Will I have to queue to get in?
Queues are very likely.
Individual retailers are responsible for managing the queuing system to get in to their shop and will ensure social distancing is in place. There will be a limited number of spaces in each queue in order to ensure pedestrians can walk around and maintain social distancing. If the queuing area is full, you will be asked to come back later.
What will happen inside the shops?
Each store will have its own rules but you can expect:
- One-way systems
- Social distancing
- A maximum number of people inside at any one time
- Changing rooms may be closed
- Policies such as no in-store returns
Guidelines will differ from shop to shop and outlets like jewellers and shoe shops will have their own rules. Please visit the retailer’s website for up to date information.
Will I face difficulties as a wheelchair user?
The city centre will remain as accessible as possible and Covid-19 related modifications will attempt to meet everyone’s needs as much as they can.
Is public transport up and running?
Public transport is running but customers need to be aware that space is greatly reduced on buses, trains and ferries due to social distancing rules.
Merseytravel is asking people to rethink if, when and by what means they travel. Cycling and walking is advised wherever possible. If you need to use public transport it is vital that you plan ahead and leave plenty of time for your journey.
From Monday 15 June, the Government has announced that face coverings will be mandatory on all public transport, with some exceptions. All the latest information is available as part of Merseytravel’s ReThink Travel campaign and can be found on the Merseytravel website.
Where can I park?
There are around 58 car parks (council operated and private) located in and around the city centre. It is advised you check the opening hours for the car park you are planning to use. Information about council car parks can be found here.
Contactless payment is available in many locations and ‘Phone and Pay’ is available on all on-street pay and display bays. Please remember, all parking restrictions are now back in place so you must pay if you are parking in the city.
Look out for electronic signs on routes into the city centre which will show parking availability at the main car parks.
There are also bike stands located across the city.
Will restaurants and cafes be open?
Dining-in is not an option at the moment, but a number of restaurants and coffee shops are successfully operating take away services. Please be aware, it is likely you will not have access inside these premises so you won’t be able to use their toilets or washroom facilities.
It is anticipated that food and drink outlets may fully reopen from 4 July, and in the meantime, the city council is working on a £450,000 project which will reimagine spaces in Liverpool in an outdoor European style. Read more here.
Will there be any places to sit and rest in the city centre?
We are encouraging people to use the shops they need and then to head straight home afterwards. There are benches and concrete seating areas but social distancing guidelines must be observed at all times.
Will there be public toilets/baby changing facilities available?
There will be a limited number of public toilets located at Liverpool ONE’s Information Centre (located on Wall Street). These will be free to use, however, please note the Liverpool ONE toilets will be closed for short periods every hour for cleaning which will result in reduced capacity at that time.
What if I want to go shopping in other areas such as Liverpool Shopping Park at Edge Lane or New Mersey Retail in Speke?
The advice is check in advance that the shop you want to visit is open by visiting the store’s website. More compact shopping areas are likely to get very busy so think carefully about your reasons for visiting.
What if I have Covid-19 symptoms?
There is a strict ‘no visit’ policy for anyone who is displaying symptoms, or who has knowingly been in contact with anyone else known to have coronavirus in the last 14 days.
You should self-isolate in these circumstances and register for the NHS testing/NHS Track and Trace programme – you can register here or call 119.
What is Track and Trace?
The Government has introduced a Track and Trace system which will alert you if you have come into contact with someone who has the virus and you will be asked to self-isolate for fourteen days. This will help stop the virus spreading, whilst keeping us safe and protecting our NHS. More information can be found here.
I’m feeling anxious about going into the city centre – is there support?
These are strange times and some people may need a little extra help as the lockdown eases. Public Health Liverpool has lots of advice and a guide to local services that can help if you are feeling low, anxious or stressed. Head to their website for more information.
What if I am on the Shielded List?
People who are shielding remain vulnerable and should continue to take precautions. They can now leave their home for short periods, as long as they are able to maintain strict social distancing. If you choose to spend time outdoors, this can be with members of your own household. If you live alone, you can spend time outdoors with one person from another household. Ideally, this should be the same person each time. If you do go out, you should take extra care to minimise contact with others by keeping two meters apart. This guidance will be kept under regular review.