Latest Covid restrictions: Are Chichester businesses concerned?

Are Chichester businesses worried they might be affected by the latest Covid-19 restrictions? We spoke to owners to find out.

Covid rules tightened across England today (Monday, December 13) and all adults are advised to now work from home if they can.

The familiar guidance comes as part of the government’s ‘Plan B’ to tackle the spread of the Omicron Covid-19 variant.

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All the new Covid rules as work from home guidance kicks in today
Chichester's late night shopping events return. Photo by Derek Martin Photography and Art. SUS-211127-201018008

We spoke to businesses in the city to find out whether they were fearful of a drop of footfall or whether shoppers would continue to support the high street.

The mood in the city has been generally optimistic.

Asked if he was thought the new regulations might affect footfall in the city, Adrian Marden, from Present Surprise in South Street, said: "Who knows?

"We have not really seen a dip in trade so far but then we are only on the first day [of the new Covid regulations].

"I think people will still come out and shop. For us, all that matters is that people wear masks but we have been wearing masks, and most of our customers have been, all the way through so I don't think it is a huge issue to be honest."

Owner of Luckes Café in North Street, Hambrook resident Melanie Luckes had said: "People have got used to it. I don't think it is anything like it was. I don't think its big stress or alarm.

"It hasn't had [an affect on us]. We've been busy but we had a lull for two days it was the time it was leaked about a Plan B coming. We bounced back and we just got on with it.

"We are known to be very clean and have been taking people's temperatures. We are very careful. Everybody is vaccinated.

"Keep calm and carry on or keep making coffee and carry on."

Alex Carmen, manager of Sit and Sip in North Street: "Technically we have not been affected. Just the threat of more restrictions to come has definitely affected customer's morale.

"I don't think the current restrictions are the finished product. Seeing that hospitality is kind of unaffected in terms of mask wearing indoors.

"Next door you have to wear a mask but here you can come in on a Saturday night and you don't have to — it seems confusing to me.

"There are quite a lot of people on the fence."