B&Q has closed today (Tuesday March 24) but it expects to reopen from tomorrow.
It comes after Boris Johnson warned on Monday that all “non-essential” shops are to shut – although hardware stores count as essential.
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The chain says it is now working out the safest and simplest way to support communities in providing only essential products moving forwards.
A B&Q spokesperson said: “The Prime Minister announced that all non-essential retailers will close to help stop the spread of Covid-19.
“We have now learnt that the DIY and Hardware store sector has been categorised as an essential retailer by the government.
“We are now working out the safest and simplest way to support communities in providing only essential products moving forwards.
Which brands are shutting up shop
HERE is the list of all the retailers that have said they are closing their doors thanks to coronavirus
- Boden – closing all stores
- Burton – closing all stores
- Calvin Klein – closing all stores
- Clarks – closing all stores
- Costa – closing all stores but will try to keep shops in hospitals open
- Dorothy Perkins – closing all stores
- Evans – closing all stores
- Fenwick – closing all stores
- H&M – closing all stores
- HMV – closing all stores
- IKEA – closing all stores
- John Lewis – closing all stores
- McDonald’s – closing all stores
- Miss Selfridge – closing all stores
- Nando’s – closing all stores
- Oxfam – closing all stores
- Patisserie Valerie – closing all stores
- Starbucks – closing all stores
- Sweaty Betty – closing all stores
- Timpson – closing all stores
- TK Maxx – closing all stores
- Topshop – closing all stores
- Wallis – closing all stores
“Our stores, as we prepare, will be closed today, Tuesday March 24.
“Thank you for your understanding and support in advance. More information will follow.”
Until now, the chain of home improvement shops has had reduced opening hours of 8am to 5pm (previously 7am to 9pm in most shops) from Monday to Saturday.
On Sunday the shops have been open as normal, from 11am to 5pm.
The number of customers allowed into shops had also been restricted because of the coronavirus outbreak.
At its 296 physical shops, B&Q said communication around respecting space had also been increased to help customers to be more aware of how to keep their distance from other shoppers during the ongoing pandemic.
So called “safe-space” markings had been introduced at the checkouts.
As of March 24, you can still order online for click and collect delivery and home delivery – but click and collect won’t be available to collect in stores today.
Online orders have been available at any time and there is a contactless home delivery service.
Customers can choose to have this when they ordering, with the item left at an arranged location outside of their home.
B&Q says because of an increase in demand, the click and collect service has typically been available within four hours at most shops.
It also says this service is available directly to customer cars – but warns customers not to visit a shop until they have confirmation their order is ready.
CORONAVIRUS CRISIS – BE IN THE KNOW
John Lewis said it was shutting all of its 50 shops on Monday.
At the weekend Ikea also shut its UK shops because of the virus outbreak.
While McDonald’s confirmed it will close all 1,350 stores in the UK and Ireland due to the spread of COVID-19.
Costa says it’ll also close branches but will “do its best” to keep stores open in hospitals for NHS staff.
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The food chain Nandos is also shutting its restaurants.
Cafes, pubs, bars and restaurants were told to close by the end of the day on Friday (March 20) by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
But they are still allowed to serve takeaways.