Tesco reopens 'non-essential' sections of stores after lockdown confusion

TESCO has reopened ‘non-essential’ sections of its stores after lockdown confusion.

The retail giant had previously barricaded ‘non-essential’ items – sparking fury amongst customers.

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The U-turn comes after furious shoppers took to Twitter to complain about not being able to get to clothes and into other parts of the supermarket due to strict new lockdown rules.

Customers were left bemused at the sight of ‘non-essential’ sections barricaded off by walls of tinsel and stacks of Corona and Lynx Africa.

The barricades were watched over by Tesco security guards – leaving shoppers unable to buy clothing, hombre, toys and electronics.

But the supermarket has since confirmed that it reopened its upper floors on Saturday morning, and all items are back on sale.

A spokesperson said: “Our mezzanine levels are now open again for customers in all our stores.”

The store has also released its Christmas delivery slots – and is encouraging Brits to shop inshore amid high demand online.

The spokesperson added that the retail giant has doubled the number of online slots to 1.5 million each week in order to help those unable to shop in store. 

At the Tesco in Walsall, West Midlands, walkways leading to parts of the store were blocked off by walls of Corona beer earlier this week.

And at supermarkets in London and Cambridge similar blockades made up of pallets of sweets and beer were erected to stop shoppers from browsing "non-essential" items.

Following guidance published by the UK government on 5 November, shops in England that have "sufficiently distinct parts" were told they should close the areas that held non-crucial stock.

Shoppers had reported being unable to get access to baby clothes and socks due to the new restrictions.

One shopper at the Tesco in Streatham fumed on Twitter: "Disappointed to see after the uproar of blocking off clothing, toys, homeware etc sections in one of your stores in Wales, you’ve now done this in your Streatham Extra store.

They added: "I can buy booze, but, not a kettle or underwear."

Stores were blasted for similar measures during the 17-day national lockdown last month in Wales.

The guidance from the UK government said: "Where a business has sufficiently distinct parts, and one section provides essential retail and one section provides non-essential retail, the non-essential sections should close to limit interactions between customers and the opportunity for the disease to spread.

"For example a food shop may stay open, but a homeware section on a separate floor or separate building should close."


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