The advice from BEIS is that retailers can continue or start to operate click and collect services if done safely.
Recent news stories have reported that non-essential retail stores can operate click and collect services. The BTHA has spoken to the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), on behalf of the UK toy industry, to clarify the situation.
The advice is that businesses can continue as long as they can operate social distancing measures, and where they cannot operate safe social distancing, they should adopt measures to mitigate virus transfer, such as side-by-side working rather than face-to-face. This includes keeping warehouses and deliveries operating and providing a click and collect service.
This advice appears to be in conflict with the government list of only essential retailers remaining open, but the BEIS has confirmed that retailers can continue, or start, to operate click and collect services, as long as they are able to ensure safe social distancing measures for consumers.
Customers must remain outside the store and collect orders at the door or outside with social distancing measures in place. BEIS has indicated that retailers with their own parking area that can control collections would therefore be allowed to operate click and collect services, as consumers can visit, park and collect at the door whilst observing the 2m rule. Shopping centres will not be permitted to reopen and stores on high streets should assess the situation, as they may not be able to safely operate the social distancing rule. If they cause obstruction, they could fall foul of police measures that would not see toy collection as an ‘essential’ retail operation. However, for retailers that can determine safe social distancing measures, click and collect options are able to remain operational.
The government is aware that there is conflict in some of the advice and is currently working to amend guidance to relaunch to retailers. In the meantime, the BTHA recommends reading the current advice here.