After being closed for three months due to the coronavirus pandemic, antique shops have re-opened. There is cautious optimism amongst antique dealers that sales will pick up.
Antique shops have introduced a number of safety measures to protect customers and staff. The number of people allowed inside a shop at one time is limited, extra cleaning and hygiene systems are in force, and social distancing measures introduced. Hand sanitizers are available at shop entrances. Shop layouts have been changed to provide more space for people to walk in. Instead of a two metre social distance, one dealer is advising customers to stay a cabinet apart.
Some shops will keep their doors locked with customers ringing a bell to be let in. Shops that expect a large number of customers may have appointment systems to restrict the number of customers arriving at the same time. Galleries with popular exhibitions have introduced online ticket systems to control visitor numbers.
Many antique shops are discouraging people from paying by cash. If a dealer does not take credit cards, they accept cheques. Antique dealer, David Harvey, said:
“I’m absolutely looking forward to it and I’ve got clients who have already said that they’re going to come.”
Antique dealers that sell jewellery and other small items have been selling online and expect that some of their customers will continue to buy online when their shops open.
Lancashire antique dealers list their stock on websites, but looking at photographs and reading descriptions is no substitute for seeing the actual antique chests, cabinets, sofas and other antiques in shops.
No comments yet.