Recap all the updates as shoppers faced huge queues at Primark, Nike and Debenhams non-essential shops, salons, barbers, pubs, restaurants and more reopen in Portsmouth
Businesses across Portsmouth reopened for the first time since December.
Non-essential retail, salons, pubs and restaurants opened up today across the city and in the surrounding town.
It was the latest stage in the easing of lockdown, following the reopening of schools and the return of outdoor socialising with the rule of six last month.
The businesses will be reopening in Portsmouth for the first time since mid-December, when the city was moved up to Tier Four restrictions in the run-up to Christmas.
Pubs and restaurants will be allowed to serve customers outdoors. Salons and hairdressers can also reopen.
SEE ALSO: Full list of pubs reopen in Portsmouth
We will have reporters down at Commercial Road and Gunwharf Quays in Portsmouth, as well as in Gosport, Fareham and Havant this morning.
Queues begun to form at Primark in Portsmouth well before it reopened at 8am and have only increased, stretching back down Commercial Road.
Queues also formed at Debenhams in Fareham and at the Nike store in Gunwharf Quays.
Recap our live blog below to see all our updates, photos, videos and reaction.
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Recap all the updates as shops, pubs and more reopened in Portsmouth
Last updated: Monday, 12 April, 2021, 10:54
- Non-essential retail is reopening today
- Pubs and restaurants can serve customers outdoors
Trader says: ‘It’s a leap into the unknown’
Perry Leon, of Leon’s Fruit and Veg. Perry and his wife Sandy have run the stall for nearly 25 years in Fareham and Gosport.
Perry, from West End, said: ‘We have been doing deliveries but that’s all. The high streets were empty. It’s been tough. We just don’t know what to expect from today, it’s a leap into the unknown. It’s bad enough when you come back from a two week holiday, let alone this.’
Hunt for bargains at Debenhams in Fareham
Jennifer Martin, 31, from Copnor, with her Nan Margaret Aylott, 72, and mum Tracey Going, 52, both from Widley. Jennifer is getting married on August 21 in Gretna Green and they are on the hunt for bargains.
Jennifer said: ‘It’s sad that the chains are going, there’s nothing left in the town centres anymore. We are hoping to find some bargains though, get in and get out quick.’
Big queues for the Nike store in Gunwharf Quays as well
Fareham business owner ‘excited’ to be open again
Shane Davies and Lesley Ralls, from Crafty Makery, in Fareham Shopping Centre. The shop, which is a charity that offers arts and crafts, opens properly again today after four months.
Shane said: ‘We are looking forward to the challenge. Covid has brought an awareness of looking after people’s minds, which is what we do. We are looking forward to being open again. The high street needs to change and there needs to be more for people to do, like what we offer here.’
Kids hoping to get their hands on shoes worn by football heroes in Gunwharf Quays
Sophie Baker from Port Solent, with children Joseph, Rory, Darcy and Romeo. The family has been queueing outside Nike since 9.15am.
Sophie said: 'Nike is the favourite shop for all four of the boys. They play a lot of football and are all in need of some new boots. We were expecting it to be quite busy so have done quite well to be so near the front, all things considered.' The boys are hoping to get some new Nike Mercurials, which are their favourite boots and also worn by the likes of Ronaldo, Neymar Jr and Mbappe
All the major shops with queues in Portsmouth, Gunwharf Quays and around the area this morning
Thinking of heading to town to do some shopping?
We have pulled together a list of the places with queues - so you know what to expect.
A goodbye to lockdown in Havant
Helium balloons bid lockdown 'buh bye' in the window of Headromance hair salon in Havant
Eager queue for Ian’s barbers in Havant
Queue in Havant for Ian’s. Walk-in customers waiting for a trim.
18 year old brothers Wesley and Jacob Murray, who have been waiting for half an hour to get a walk in appointment. Wesley said: 'I'm really looking forward to a haircut, it's got really uncomfortable.'