Coronavirus: Waitrose in Waterlooville to stay open until September to help during Covid-19 outbreak

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WAITROSE has announced its Waterlooville store will stay open for three months longer than originally planned to help serve the community during the coronavirus outbreak.

The decision means the store, in Dukes Walk, will now shut its doors for good in September, not in June 14 as previously planned.

A Waitrose spokesman confirmed the shop is also setting aside hard-to-find essential products from every delivery specially for NHS staff.

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They are available to collect at any time of day, to work around the medical professionals’ shift patterns.

Waitrose in Waterlooville. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (040320-3)Waitrose in Waterlooville. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (040320-3)
Waitrose in Waterlooville. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (040320-3) | JPIMedia Resell

Waitrose in Waterlooville will be open 8am to 8pm Monday to Saturday and 9.30am to 4pm on Sundays.

It will dedicate the first hour of each day to the elderly and vulnerable and those who care for them.

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Waitrose set to close its Waterlooville store

The decision to keep the store open longer means all 179 members of staff will retain their jobs until the final closure.

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Waitrose and Partners regional manager, David Coltman, said: ‘We understand we have a responsibility to the community to remain open for as long as possible during this incredibly challenging and unprecedented time.

‘We are making every effort to ensure a good supply of food for everyone and our Waterlooville partners continue to do an incredible job in very difficult circumstances to help customers get what they need.’

Waitrose Waterlooville is also giving NHS staff priority through dedicated checkouts, staff opening new tills for them or allowing them to the front of the queue.

Members of Waitrose staff are also being given free meals at work and a £1m Community Support Fund has been set up by the John Lewis Partnership to help people in need.

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The fund will help workers facing additional costs as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, such as childcare.

Measures introduced to ensure the safety of customers include limiting shopper numbers, introducing 'safe distance’ floor signage, setting up protective screens at checkouts and bringing in extra security.

Dedicated ‘two-metre marshalls’ will also help manage queues, while customers will be encouraged to used contactless payments.

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