High Peak Borough Council is working with the County Council on measures to ensure people can move safely around town centres and, to further support the local economy, outdoor markets and some public toilets are also re-opening.
Next week sees a further easing of the Covid-19 restrictions with more non-essential retail businesses opening their doors and towns and villages across High Peak gearing up to safely welcome back shoppers and visitors.
Enhanced cleaning measures are in place for public toilets and car park ticketing machines.
Councillor Damien Greenhalgh, Executive Councillor for Regeneration, Tourism and Leisure, said: “We know that as more shops and businesses start to re-open people will be keen to support their local traders by visiting towns and villages across the High Peak. We’re working with our partners to make sure measures are in place so that people can return safely.
“That will mean some changes to town centres and to how shops and businesses operate so that the necessary social distancing, and other safety measures, can be observed to protect everyone.
“To further support our local economy we’re also starting to open up the facilities which an increased number of people in towns will require, such as public toilets, and we’re looking forward to welcoming people back.
“I would, however, strongly urge people to behave responsibly when they are out and about by staying 2 metres apart and following the specific requirements of any shops or amenities they visit. That way, we can all stay safe as we gradually begin to return to those activities we enjoyed before lockdown.”
Glossop’s outdoor market will re-open from Friday 12 June and people will also be able to use St Ann’s Well in Buxton from 15 June as long as they maintain social distancing and do not block the highway.
Public toilets, including those at the Town Hall and Pavilion Gardens car park in Buxton and at Manor Park and the Market in Glossop, alongside some facilities at visitor sites including Bamford, Castleton and Edale will also be open from 15 June.
The Council is also planning for the safe re-opening of toilets in Chapel-en-le-Frith, New Mills and Whaley Bridge.
Most facilities will operate on a one-in-one-out basis and toilets will need to close completely whilst they are cleaned. Opening hours will also change and may be reduced.
The Council is also working with the Chamber of Commerce, Growth Hub and Marketing Peak District and Derbyshire to support businesses with advice, training and funding to help them re-open.
To date, the Council has paid small business and retail, hospitality and leisure grants totalling £23.6 million to almost 2,080 High Peak businesses – approximately 90% of those eligible.
The Discretionary Business Grant scheme to support businesses with ongoing fixed property costs who weren’t eligible for the earlier grants, is also now open with around 120 applications received. The deadline for applications is Tuesday 16 June and businesses can apply online via the Council’s website.
Council Leader, Councillor Anthony Mckeown, said: “There is lots of help and support for shops and businesses as they start to open their doors again after lockdown.
“The Council is supporting businesses by working with our partners to make public spaces safe to move around and by providing funding and advice so if you have any questions or need advice please get in touch and we’ll do our best to help.
“We would also urge any businesses that may be eligible for either the business rates grants or the new discretionary fund to get in touch and make an application.”
To find out more about business grants, and for more details about the re-opening of public toilets and other Council amenities, please visit www.highpeak.gov.uk/Coronavirus