City shoppers support face masks announcement

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport and in shops. - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

Shoppers and city businesses have backed the government's announcement for compulsory masks in shops and public transport.

Some believe the masks should never have been scrapped in the first place with many continuing to wear them even when they were not mandatory across Norwich.

Prime minister Boris Johnson announced the reintroduction of masks from Tuesday at a press conference on Saturday. 

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport and in shops. - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

Reacting to the news, Sally Davies, a bookseller at Bookbugs and Dragon Tales in Timber Hill, said: "It's necessary. I caught Covid from walking around the city and I think it would have been unlikely if I was wearing one.

Sally Davies, 37, book seller at Bookbugs and Dragon Tailes. Face masks to be compulsory on public t

Sally Davies, 37, book seller at Bookbugs and Dragon Tailes. Face masks to be compulsory on public transport and in shops. - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

"I would say 40pc of customers have carried on wearing them anyway. A lot of people are still very cautious." 

Groups of people could be seen wearing facemasks as they walked along Gentleman's Walk on Sunday morning following the announcement. 

Among those out and about was John Fisher, 75, who described the decision as "a no brainer". 

John Fisher, 77. Face masks to be compulsory on public transport and in shops. Picture: DENISE BRADL

John Fisher, 75, who was walking along Gentleman's Walk - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

"I just popped into the Body Shop and automatically put a mask on," he said.

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"I am all for it. Any simple measures that keep us safer have got to be good."

Lucy Hughes, 21, who was visiting the city with her younger sister Amy, 19, and friend Sophie Warman, 21, said she has always worn a mask on public transport since they were first introduced.

Lucy Hughes, 21, left, and her sister, Amy, 19, centre, with Sophie Warman, 21. Face masks to be com

Lucy Hughes, 21, left, and her sister, Amy, 19, centre, with Sophie Warman, 21 ahead of face masks becoming compulsory on public transport and in shops. - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

"It is really not much of a problem and I personally feel better wearing one," she said.

"It's a simple ask," Miss Warman added. 

Ray Coyle, 70 and his wife Chris, 77, both agree with the decision.

Ray, 70, left, and Chris Coyle, 77. Face masks to be compulsory on public transport and in shops. Pi

Ray, 70, left, and Chris Coyle, 77 - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

"We never stopped putting them on and social distancing when we go into a shop," Mr Coyle said.

Meghan Darby, 23, who works at the Lakenham Creamery market stall, said: "It is needed because of the new strain coming. If we do not have them back we would be in lockdown by Christmas.

Meghan Darby, 23, at the Lakenham Creamery stall at Norwich Market. Face masks to be compulsory on p

Meghan Darby, 23, at the Lakenham Creamery stall at Norwich Market - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

"A lot of people do not realise Covid is still very real and people are dying." 

Ben Silvester, 48, of Joe's Pets in the market, said: "I do not think they should have done away with them in the first place.

Ben Silvester at Joe's Pets stall at Norwich Market. Face masks to be compulsory on public transport

Ben Silvester at Joe's Pets stall at Norwich Market - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

"It won't have any impact on business."

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport and in shops - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport and in shops - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport

People out and about in Gentleman's Walk as face masks are to become compulsory on public transport and in shops - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021