SHOPS in Middlewich are open for business and are following strict coronavirus safety measures to keep customers safe.

That is the message from Cllr Mike Hunter, chairman of Middlewich Town Council.

It comes as businesses across town contacted Cllr Hunter with concerns following a video posted online on Monday by Cllr Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, telling residents to stay at home as much as possible.

Cllr Hunter, a Labour CEC member alongside Cllr Corcoran, insists it is safe for residents to support their local high street – provided they use sanitiser, carry out social distancing and wear a mask indoors.

"We know that local businesses have gone out of their way to keep everyone safe," said Cllr Hunter.

Winsford Guardian:

"If you, as a resident, walk into a premises, you can see the measures they have taken.

"If you feel safe in that environment and you follow the government rules then you will be safe.

"Our local high street is open for business and we support everything they have been doing, not only to keep people safe, but to stay successful.”

The message comes as Middlewich Town Council gears up for the Totally Locally Fiver Fest from October 10 to 24.

According to the council, if everyone in town spent an extra £5 a week in small businesses, it would £2.7 million a year to the Middlewich economy.

Businesses in town are being encouraged to take part in the event by creating a £5 offering to the public – while residents are being asked to play their part by putting their money where their house is.

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Lisa Benskin, town clerk, said: "The Fiver Fest concept is a great way of encouraging new and regular customers to come into the town centre and benefit from your £5 offer.

"It could be a coffee and a cake, or a card and small gift, a lunch time meal deal, some socks or a small meat bundle.

"The key is encouraging residents to visit their high street and discover both the offers available and the businesses that make Middlewich unique."

Business packs will be distributed this week, and a map is being produced to highlight businesses that are taking part.

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