Beaverbrooks has confirmed it will open all 70 of its stores on June 15, the earliest possible date permitted in England.
A comprehensive health and safety programme designed to keep staff and customers safe will see Perspex screens installed at consultation points, designated team members for shoppers, fewer selling zones, hand sanitising as people come in and reduced numbers allowed into stores.
Store staff will have their temperatures taken every day.
“Over the past few months, we have been developing comprehensive plans for this reopening, which put safety at the top of the list while ensuring we are able to resume the high level of personalised service our customers expect,” says Anna Blackburn, managing director of Beaverbrooks.
Personal protective equipment including face masks and gloves will be available for staff and customers, but they will not be mandatory.
Customers will be allowed to try on watches and jewellery thanks to a disinfection process that kills germs without damaging the valuable items.
Beaverbrooks has not shared any performance figures for the ten weeks of lock down. Retail analyst GfK said that store sales for watches in April dropped by 97%, but rising ecommerce sales had somewhat compensated so that overall sales were down by 82.3%.
Beaverbrooks initially closed its warehouse and ecommerce operation at the end of March, but restarted on April 15.
“It has been a challenging and uncertain time for all of us, but we are feeling optimistic about the future, our 960 colleagues are looking forward to reopening our doors to welcome customers again,” Ms Blackburn says.
Beaverbrooks stores in England will be open seven days a week though opening times may vary.
Stores will be open for all services including returns, repairs, services and click & collection.
The only exception will be cleaning of customer jewellery which we cannot be completed safely at this time.
Beaverbrooks is pending further updates from the Scottish Government on when its Scottish stores will be reopening.