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The Dolphin Shopping Centre unveils plans to prioritise shopper safety once reopen

Centre management has begun preparing for the phased reopening of non-essential retailers at the Dolphin Shopping Centre.

In-line with the British Retail Consortium’s recommendations and the Government’s published guidelines, stating that non-essential retail can reopen from Monday June 15, the centre has undertaken an extensive and detailed audit of its former organisation and plans significant amendments to the new working of the centre upon reopening.

It has reviewed the layout of the mall to ensure walkways are as clear as possible to accommodate two-metre social distancing rules with designated entrances and exits into the centre. A one-way route for shoppers has been implemented which will be clearly marked, with customers being encouraged to shop alone were possible.

To increase space for shoppers, temporary commercial units have been removed from the mall and the centre will operate to a reduced capacity, which will be monitored on an ongoing basis. If necessary, shoppers will therefore be asked to queue outside the various entrances of the centre and individual retailers, while maintaining social distancing measures safely.

Staff members have undergone training to support the social distancing measures and will be visible throughout the centre to ensure shoppers’ experience is as safe as possible. The centre has also invested heavily in PPE including visors, gloves, and face masks to protect its staff members.

The centre’s commitment to shopper safety is demonstrated by the budget that has been allocated to purchase additional cleaning resources. The team has secured a Clorox machine and several contactless hand sanitiser stations which will be positioned around the centre. Enhanced and more frequent cleaning routines will be carried out daily with frequent touch points, such as lift buttons and door handles, being regularly cleaned.

The public toilets, including both disabled and baby changing facilities, will remain open due to the space available in the recently refurbished toilets. Shoppers can safely adhere to social distancing rules whilst using the facilities.

John Grinnell, Centre Manager at the Dolphin Shopping Centre, commented: “The safety of our shoppers and staff is paramount and our centre team has worked tirelessly to support our essential retailers that have remained open during the lockdown.

“Now as we enter the reopening phase of non-essential retail, we are working in partnership with all our retailers, using Government guidance, to help them comply with our safety standards to provide a safe shopping experience for all customers. This is in addition to the measures that we are implementing at the centre. We have also taken practical advice from the British Retail Consortium and will continue to monitor and review the new systems in place and make adjustments as necessary. We urge shoppers to prioritise shopping safely and where possible, visit alone or in small groups if essential.”

The Dolphin Shopping Centre is currently open for essential items, Monday to Saturday 8.30am to 6.30pm, and Sundays from 10am to 5.30pm. Elderly and vulnerable customers are encouraged to shop between the hours of 9am to 10am, whilst NHS and key workers will be given priority between the hours of 4.30pm to 5.30pm. Each retailers’ specific opening times are available on their website. All other retailers remain closed as per the Government directives. For more information, please visit www.dolphinshoppingcentre.co.uk/covid-19