FACE coverings in shops and supermarkets will become mandatory from July 24. Those who fail to comply with the new rules could face a fine up to £100.

Businesses will need updated guidance from the government on the measures that they should be taking in order to maintain their Covid-secure status and give confidence to people walking through their doors that they will be safe.

It is the worry of some businesses that these further restrictions will hamper footfall, acting as a deterrent for some customers who may simply choose to stay at home and shop online rather than go and visit smaller non-essential stores.

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However, businesses are hoping that these extra measures will ensure confidence in some customers who have been reluctant to visit opening stores that with wearing face coverings it will be safer to visit non-essential shops.

Government will also have to give further clarity on the enforcement of these new measures and make sure businesses are clear on the new rules allowing them to be able to enforce these correctly.

Many businesses say that these measures being introduced this late into the pandemic are ineffective and too late, the lack of clear and concise direction from Government over the wearing of facemasks in stores has been a hindrance to businesses effecting overall confidence and could see yet further damage to the local business economy. A clearer direction is needed in order to help support businesses through the recovery phase of the pandemic.

For further information on the support and advice available, please visit our Coronavirus Business Support Hub.