COUNCIL chiefs have unveiled plans to prepare Winsford town centre for social distancing when non-essential shops reopen on June 15.

Fourteen essential retailers have have remained open throughout lockdown at Winsford Cross, and they will soon be joined by 15 more.

Signage is now in place to remind shoppers and workers that coronavirus is still present and to maintain a two-metre distance.

From next week, the shopping centre will be testing out its 'new normal', including a new one-way system.

Non-essential items have been removed to increase floorspace, cleaning regimes now focus on touch points and a hand sanitiser dispenser will be installed in the entrance.

To help control the number of people there will also be reduced entrances, and each one will have a security officer counting customers to keep a steady flow and ensure social distancing is maintained.

All customers will be directed to keep left, with the atrium in the middle of Dingle being used as a roundabout so customers can exit via Jubilee or continue up Dingle Upper (towards Pondas Chemist).

The town centre manager will also be monitoring the activities through the day to ensure everything is working well.

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Cllr Karen Shore is deputy leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, which owns Winsford Cross.

She said: "After so long being closed it’s encouraging that our high streets and shops can slowly reopen.

"Winsford Cross will use next week to test the new ways of opening.

"This is an evolving situation and they may need to change any one of the measures.

"Opening safely will need cooperation and understanding from shoppers to keep everyone safe."

Winsford Market also plans to fully reopen on 15 June subject to Government confirmation.

In line with the guidance and for safety, the number of customers entering the market will be managed and social distancing reminders will be in place.

All food and drink sales will be for takeaway only and not for consumption inside the market.

Many traders also now provide collection and home delivery services, and they can be contacted directly to arrange.