Hundreds of businesses across Cumbria welcome customers back as lockdown measures ease

Pub goers enjoy a pint at a beer garden in Kendal. Credit: ITV News

Lockdown restrictions have eased in England today, allowing hundreds of businesses to reopen in Cumbria for the first time in more than three months.

Pubs and cafes, with outdoor space, and shops are welcoming back customers, as well hairdressers, barbers, and tattoo parlors. 

Outdoor tourist attractions such as zoos and safari parks, theme parks, botanic gardens, drive-in cinemas and drive-in performances events are also open. Gyms and swimming pools too.

After three months, some people could not wait a minute longer, with hairdressers and beauty appointments booked from the stroke of midnight.

Paul Wasilkowski, from Boyds Hair and Beauty in Carlisle, said: "It's been a long winter we are delighted to be back. We are a service industry. We cut hair. We dealing with customers all the time.

"People have been through some dark days these last few months so we're absolutely delighted to be reopening."

Due to restrictions on indoor hospitality, a pub in Kendal has redeveloped its outside space in order to maximise the amount of customers it can serve.

Indoor hospitality doesn't re-open until May 17th, meaning pubs like the Duke of Cumberland in Kendal can only serve outdoors. The pub's owner, Josh Macauley, says he's expecting a busy few days.

He told ITV Border: "Looking at our bookings, we're going to be really busy. We've got a lot of people in for the rest of the day, getting busier and busier into the weekend, and I think I think this weekend is going to be one to remember."

Prime Minister Boris Johnson urged the nation to “behave responsibly” as life took another step back towards normality.

Mr Johnson said: “I urge everyone to continue to behave responsibly and remember ‘Hands, face, space and fresh air’ to suppress Covid as we push on with our vaccination programme.”