Sanitiser and masks here to stay? Fakenham businesses on Covid legacy

Fakenham businesses have spoken about the lasting impact of covid measures on their trade a year on since restrictions eased.

Fakenham businesses have spoken about the lasting impact of covid measures on their trade a year on since restrictions eased. - Credit: Archant/Carol McCubbin

Exactly one year ago today, pubs, hairdressers, and retailers reopened as restrictions eased once more following the winter lockdown.

Things are slightly different now, with fewer pub marquees and plastic sheets in your hairdressers, and more of a return to things before the pandemic. 

Despite the shift back, have these industries been changed forever?

We spoke to businesses in Fakenham about the lasting impact Covid has had on them.

At Gatsby's barber, owner Carol McCubbin has ditched some of the measures which were in place when she first reopened.

Carol McCubbin completed 30 haircuts on her first day back at the office.

Carol McCubbin completed 30 haircuts on her first day back at the office back in 2021. - Credit: Aaron McMillan

However, there are still some in place, such as her continued effort to wear a face mask, which looks set to stay: “I want to thank my customers for the understanding and support they have given my business since opening up after Covid and adapting to the appointment system I have in place.

“We still wear our mask, but it’s the customer’s personal preference if they want to or not, hand sanitiser is here to stay, along with the appointments.

Owner of Gatsby's Barbers in Fakenham, Carol McCubbin

Owner of Gatsby's Barbers in Fakenham, Carol McCubbin. - Credit: Carol McCubbin.

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“The mask keeps the hair out of my mouth and I’ve felt healthier in myself wearing them, it’s just part of my uniform and if it makes people who are still unsure at ease, then it’s a win-win.”

At House of Beane, Tracey Beane, owner of the store, added there is still sanitiser on offer, as well as leaving the door open.

House Of Beane opening in Fakenham. Tracey Beane inside her shop

House Of Beane opening in Fakenham. Tracey Beane inside her shop - Credit: Brittany Woodman

There is also the lasting impact she is seeing on customers: “Trade is good, people seem to be a little more confident to be out and about shopping, although still cautious with a lot of people still wearing their masks

“I feel it is still important for people to use sanitiser to reduce the spread of germs and viruses and I like to have good airflow around the shop.

“I think certain things like this have just become part of everyday life and will be for the foreseeable future.”

The landlord of The Crown in Fakenham, Alie Hannam.

The landlord of The Crown in Fakenham, Alie Hannam. - Credit: DENISE BRADLE

At The Crown, owner Alie Hannam said her pub will continue to offer sanitiser stations: “We’ve still got hand sanitiser on the bar and had those hand machines fitted everywhere, which we still fill up. 

"I’m going to keep them because people sanitising their hands is a good thing.”