Shoppers and traders enjoy Romford market and high street in the sunshine
- Credit: Ellie Hoskins
Romford high streets and market were packed on Saturday (April 17) as shoppers and traders enjoyed the sunshine on the first weekend out of full lockdown.
This was the first weekend that non-essential shops, restaurants and bars could open in line with the government’s easing of lockdown restrictions on April 12.
Tony Geary, who has owned MGM Fashions stall in Romford Market for 19 years, was delighted to see old faces after months of being closed.
The ladies fashion stallholder said: "I'm so pleased people can finally get the non-essential items they need.
"Some people came out for the very first time and they were so happy to be free.
"Overall, I was pleased with what I made, and had lots of new stock in for the customers."
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Romford MP Andrew Rosindell visited the market and said there was a “great atmosphere”.
He told the Recorder: “It felt like the market we remember and loved so much.
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“It's a reminder of how desperate the British people are to get the economy moving once again."
The MP applauded the government’s decision to ease lockdown restrictions and stressed the upcoming milestones should not be delayed.
Under the government’s roadmap, indoor hospitality is expected to reopen on May 17, when groups of up to 30 will be able to meet outdoors.
On June 21, all legal restrictions on social contact are set to ease and nightclubs will be allowed to reopen.
Mr Rosindell also thanked the market traders who stopped at 3pm for a minute's silence in honour of The Duke of Edinburgh.