Staff forced to wear ‘coats, hats and scarves’ at work amid ‘freezing’ conditions at city store

Commercial Road. Picture: Google Street View
Commercial Road. Picture: Google Street View
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EMPLOYEES at a city centre store claim they are falling ill amid bitterly cold working temperatures.

Staff at Boots in Commercial Road say they have no choice but to wear hats, scarves and coats while they work – because the store’s ground floor his so cold.

An employee in the shop’s beauty hall – who wishes to remain anonymous – said the cold spike has led to a dip in staff morale.

They said: ‘It’s freezing in here. We don’t have working heating and because we’re on the ground floor we’re constantly faced with cold air from the automatic doors.

‘For the past two weeks we have had to wear our coats, hats and scarves while we work. It’s awful.

‘We are unable to do our jobs properly because it’s just so cold. We are not the happiest people in the world, at the moment.’

While measures have been put in place to warm up the shop floor, the employee says, they have proved ineffective.

The worker continued: ‘The store managers are doing everything they possibly can. They have provided us with miniature heaters but they just don’t make a difference. It’s the people higher up than need to do something about this.

‘People have become unwell with colds and one of our colleagues has Raynaud’s disease, which can make your fingers and toes numb when the temperature is low.

‘We just want to be warm when we come into work so we can actually do our jobs, without having to stand right next to a portable heater.’

A Boots UK spokesperson said the heating in the store was working and added: ‘We can confirm that we are working urgently with contractors to fix the over-door heater in our Portsmouth Store. Care for our colleagues and customers is of the utmost importance, so as a temporary measure, we do have some large heating units in the store. We’d like to apologise for any inconvenience in the meantime.’