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NON-essential high street traders across the Vale of Glamorgan have expressed their excitement as they prepare to open their doors from Monday, April 12.

Having been closed since before Christmas, shop owners from Cowbridge, Penarth, Llantwit Major and Barry are looking forward to welcoming back customers, old and new for the first time in months.

As part of the re-opening of non-essential retail, the Vale of Glamorgan Council is encouraging customers to “think local” and support high streets as part of the Vale Town Centres campaign.

The ongoing campaign aims to boost footfall to town centres and support businesses recovering from the impact of lockdown. For many shop owners, trade has been seriously affected since the pandemic outbreak in March 2020.

Sarah Legg from No.39 in Cowbridge said:

“At No 39 we really appreciated the support of our customers during the lockdown, it meant an awful lot that you supported us during this time. We can’t wait to see you all to say thank you in person! We’ll be open 7 days a week!”

Karen from Umpa Lumpa Sweet Shop in Penarth said:

“Thanks for your support. The team at Umpa Lumpa sweet shop is excited to welcome back our customers into a safe but fun environment! It will be lovely to hear the chatter and hustle and bustle in Windsor Arcade.”

Fay Blakeley from Homemade Wales in Barry commented:

‘‘We’re delighted to be reopening and are looking forward to seeing all our customers and community again.

“We’re all restocked with work by our established makers, in addition to introducing some new makers to the Homemade Wales family. It’s been a long winter, but we’ve used the time to consolidate our online offering, in particular our luxury hamper service.

“We’ve also created a new designated ‘Pantry’ area in a backroom/part of the shop, which will allow customers to the bricks & mortar shop to pick their own hampers, whilst we wrap them at our new hamper wrapping station.”

Nia Hollins, Principal Tourism and Marketing Officer for the Vale of Glamorgan Council, said:

“The coronavirus pandemic has had a significant impact on all our lives, but for our nation’s high streets it has been devastating. Independently run businesses are completely reliant on your support to survive – without that our high streets will never recover.

“As non-essential retailers reopen next week, we’re asking locals to throw their full support behind our vital high streets. We’d encourage everyone to support this campaign by doing their bit to support businesses in Cowbridge, Barry, Penarth and Llantwit Major.

“Whether you’re shopping for something big or small, everything helps. Please show your support and think local, they need you now more than ever.”

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