CLOTHES shops are among the high street retailers who reopened their doors today – but what about fitting rooms?
Changing rooms have been closed since the first lockdown because Covid-secure guidance meant they had to remain shut all of last year.
Last week, the Government gave given fashion brands the go ahead to open changing rooms and the new rules come in place today, so customers can try before they buy.
But due to the Covid-secure rules, not all retailers will be opening them again, or at least not straight away as they open up today.
Here's everything you need to know about fitting rooms in the stores that reopened today:
Will changing rooms be open from today?
Shops are allowed to open fitting rooms from today without the need to quarantine clothing afterwards.
Previously shops were ordered to keep their changing rooms shut, after they reopened last summer.
But retailers have been calling for change amid fears people won't return to high streets and will continue shopping online.
However, retailers don't have to offer the service again and some are choosing not to.
Timeline for businesses reopening after lockdown
PRIME Minister Boris Johnson has outlined his roadmap for easing England out of lockdown.
Businesses will be allowed to reopen on the following dates, as long as the "four steps to freedom" are met.
TODAY – April 12
- Hospitality outdoors
- Self-catered staycations with one household
- Indoor hospitality
- Indoor exercise gyms
- Bingo halls
- Sports stadiums to reopen but capped to 10,000 fans
What rules are there for fitting rooms?
Retailers and customers will have to follow Covid rules when using fitting rooms to try on clothes.
Shop managers will need to leave it "several minutes" between customers and cubicles should be cleaned regularly.
Stores are also advised to deploy a member of staff to control entry to changing areas and allow only one person at a time into a cubicle.
But the rules stop short of saying that clothes should be quarantined before being put back out on the shop floor again, as was required of them before.
The guidance says: "The enclosed nature of fitting rooms may result in increased risk of transmission of Covid-19. They should therefore be carefully managed to reduce that risk.
"Retail businesses should update their risk assessments for each premises where fitting rooms are being used."
Which stores are opening changing rooms today?
John Lewis opened its fitting rooms today, along with other in-store services like kids shoe fittings and home design services.
Rules in place to keep customers and staff safe include wearing a face mask (unless exempt) and social distancing.
The retailer has staff on the door to help customers, manage queues and keep an eye on the number of people in store.
Fashion brand H&M has said it is reopening some of its fitting rooms this week.
It is not clear exactly which stores will be affected so it may be best to contact your local store before heading out.
You can find the contact details but typing in your postcode to the store locator tool.
River Island has most fitting rooms open today so customers can try clothes on before buying them.
Customers can head back to River Island stores in England and Wales this week.
They'll have to follow Covid-secure measures though, such as wearing a mask, social distancing and hand sanitising regularly.
Which stores WON'T be opening changing rooms
Some stores have confirmed they will be keeping changing rooms closed for now. These include:
Next is still deciding on whether to reopen fitting rooms to allow customers to try on clothes before buying them.
The retailer is looking at the practicality of implementing the rules to opening changing rooms, such as having an extra staff member on hand to man them.
As it stands, the changing rooms will not be open but this could change as other retailers model their reopening this week, so we'll keep you updated if Next change their mind.
TK Maxx told The Sun it won't be opening fitting rooms for customers today.
The retailer has 349 stores across the UK, of which 307 stores are located in England and Wales.
Here are 20 products you can expect to find in store today.
Primark has confirmed it will be keeping changing rooms closed to customers when shops open again today, but it told The Sun it will be keeping things "under review".
On the plus side, the high street fave has extended opening hours at nearly all of its locations from today.
The Sun had a sneak peek at the Oxford Street store before the weekend, ahead of opening today, to check out what's in stock.
Plus, we got a first-look at its first-ever maternity range and prices start from £4.
Tesco won't be reopening any of its F&F clothing changing rooms today.
Currently, there are no plans to get the service back up and running again.
Tesco shoppers have been able to pick up clothes while on their grocery shop as supermarkets have been allowed to stay open throughout lockdown.
Marks & Spencer
M&S has said it will not be opening fitting rooms today.
However, the retailer has set up its bra-fitting service again.
Customers will be able to book appointments for "no contact" fittings and a member of staff will advise shoppers on how to measure themselves.
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