Shoppers urged to take extra care to prevent second-wave as Lancashire's high streets reopen today
The public are being urged to take extra care when visiting Lancashire's high streets and town centres to avoid a second spike in coronavirus.
Around the county, councils are putting in place measures to make high streets clean, safe and secure, but are asking the public to play their part by respecting social distancing measures.
It comes as non-essential shops and businesses are allowed to re-open their doors from today (June 15).
The District Councils’ Network, which has helped councils plan the safe reopening of town centres, said it wants the public to be reassured that safety measures will be in place for them.
But it said the public also has a important role to play in keeping the high streets safe for shopping.
"As the country begins to ease lockdown restrictions, it is absolutely essential that we all continue to exercise maximum care and caution, so as to prevent a second spike in infection," said Cllr Mark Crane, DCN lead member for stronger economies.
"District councils, as the authorities responsible for high streets and town centres, will be doing all they can to make public spaces as safe and secure as possible.
"We will be delighted to see visitors return to our high streets, which we’re working hard to reshape so that shops and businesses get the boost they desperately need, but without compromising public health.
"But we need members of the public to respect these efforts, and take extra care when visiting their local high streets and town centres during this challenging period."
The Government recently announced £20 million for district councils to lead the local effort in safeguarding high streets following the pandemic, and councils are urging the public to follow safety guidance.
To make visits to town centres and high streets safe, councils have taken the following measures:
• Helping direct foot traffic with floor markings and signage
• Carrying out more frequent street cleaning, providing hand-sanitiser posts, adapting public seating and conveniences
• Creating more pedestrianised spaces and streets
• Adapting indoor and outdoor market spaces to allow traders to operate safely
• Deploying council staff or volunteers to provide help and advice
On Sunday evening, Preston's high street was thoroughly disinfected as part of a deep clean ahead of its reopening today.
You can read more about the new weekly disinfecting programme and other measures that are being taken to ensure shoppers' safety here.
A number of Preston's city centre roads have also been closed to traffic from today (Monday, June 15) to provide more walking space for visitors to the city centre.
A list of all the road closures, including Lune Street and Fox Street, can be found here.