A DISCOUNT shopping store has reopened in Halstead following the new Government advice.

Quality Discounts has taken the decision to reopen to customers, opening its doors for the first time since March on Wednesday.

As the general item store, which is located on Halstead's High Street, is classified as an essential business, they were able to reopen before other stores which will have to wait until at least Monday 15 June.

The store closed back in March, donating much of its stock to local charities and community groups including local food banks and the Halstead Community Fridge.

The plants in store were also donated to Halstead in Bloom.

Group operations director, Karl Ottolangui, said: “Regardless of Quality Discounts being classified as an essential retailer, we closed at the end of March for the wellbeing of our staff and customers and have been considering when it would appropriate and safe to re-open.

“We have been carefully studying how other essential retailers have handled social distancing to allow them to reopen while keeping staff and customers safe.

“As a result, we have put in place measures that follow best practice and the advice of the government and the British Retail Consortium.

“This does mean that we must strictly limit how many customers can be in the store at any one time, so customers may need to queue before coming in.”

The store has created a designated queuing area outside the entrance.

There are also markers placed at two metre intervals to help customers respect each other’s personal space and all checkouts are provided with protective plastic screens.

Claire White, manager at QD in Halstead, added: “All of the team here at QD are very excited to be back and serving our customers again.

“We are ensuring our shelves are fully stocked and looking forward to being able to supply all our customers’ needs.

“However, for the safety of our customers and staff, we do ask you to bear with us if you have to queue, and to obey the social distancing procedures we have in place, as we are limiting the number of customers in the store at any one time.

“We are providing cleaning stations for our trolleys, encouraging contactless or card payments and asking customers to shop alone if at all possible.”