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Aberdeenshire businesses reopen after lockdown measures are eased


By Kyle Ritchie

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The easing of lockdown restrictions saw hairdressers, garden centres and homeware stores reopen across Aberdeenshire on Easter Monday.

Shops across the area were eager to welcome back customers after months of being closed.

And despite frequent snow showers and wintry weather they saw plenty customers return to buy items or attend hair appointments.

All of the stores have measures in place including the wearing of face masks, hand sanitiser and social distancing.

Inverurie Garden Centre based at Oldmeldrum Road was one such business that was able to reopen.

Manager Bev Bowman said: "It is good to be open again but very strange having customers wondering around.

"We have been surprisingly busy despite the weather, I think people are just desperate to get into their gardens.

Inverurie Garden Centre manager Bev Bowman.
Inverurie Garden Centre manager Bev Bowman.

"It has been so beautiful before the snow returned so people have been looking to get gardening items sorted.

"All of our staff started back last week to get ready for opening again. We only had a small team involved before that."

The only part of the garden centre that is not full reopened is the restaurant, which is serving takeaway tea, coffee and home bakes.

Hairdressers were another industry that were allowed to reopen.

For many people it was a welcome return to salons and barbers.

Elan Hair Design at West High Street was one shop that reopened its doors and could make a start on its busy schedule of appointments.

Director Lorna Milton said: "We have been closed so long and the waiting list is huge, so it is great to get back.

"We have been busy with a lot of appointments to schedule, we probably had more than 650 to reschedule and then booking in the ones that have been coming in. Today the phone has been mad.

Elan Hair Design's Lanice Milton and Blair Craig welcomed back customers.
Elan Hair Design's Lanice Milton and Blair Craig welcomed back customers.

"A lot of the staff are back and more will return later as we work different shifts.

"It is good to see customers back and the smiles on their faces when they come in.

"It is especially great for our older customers who have been stuck at home but are now getting to see people.

"It makes you feel so much better once you get your hair done."

The shop celebrated its 50th anniversary last month.

Lorna added: "It was just a pity we were closed for it but it was great to mark the milestone."

Amanda Fraser-Lamont and Robert Stephen welcomed customers back to Celebrations in Turriff.
Amanda Fraser-Lamont and Robert Stephen welcomed customers back to Celebrations in Turriff.

Homeware stores were also able to reopen with large stores including Celebrations of Turriff and Anderson's of Inverurie able to open.

Celebration's Robert Stephen said: "Celebrations of Turriff were pleased to reopen the furniture, beds and flooring departments in line with the government timetable.

"We are very much looking forward to welcoming back customers into the wider shop and cafe.

"All the other departments in the shop must of course stay closed at present but like many others we will hopefully be able to reopen the whole of the store on April 26.

"We'd like to thank all our customers for their help and understanding in the next period as we adjust to the new normal".


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