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Coronavirus (COVID-19): Staying safe when shopping


  1. Overview
  2. Changes to main shopping areas
  3. Staying safe when shopping
  4. Staying safe when travelling
  5. What businesses need to do


The Council is making changes to the following main shopping areas to make sure people can shop safely:

  • King Street, South Shields
  • Market Square, South Shields (see South Shields Market)
  • Waterloo Square, South Shields
  • The Nook, South Shields
  • Jarrow Town Centre
  • Hebburn Town Centre

Changes to main shopping areas

Hand sanitiser stations

Hand sanitiser stations are available at the Market Place in South Shields on market days, for shoppers to clean their hands.

Business and Community Support Officers

Business and Community Support Officers will support the public and local businesses by providing advice and information about how to keep safe in public spaces and local business premises.

The officers will operate in town centres and busy areas such as the foreshore and parks. They will be operational during the day and into the evening to support the hospitality sector.

Business and Community Support Officers are on hand to:

  • patrol the busiest areas
  • help shoppers to queue safely
  • remind the public to keep a safe distance
  • offer advice and support to local businesses to help ensure premises are safe for staff and customers

Read the latest press release about Business and Community Support Officers - 24 March 2021.

Stewards will also operate from 9am to 4pm, at the Market Place in South Shields on market days. Read about South Shields Market.

Messages and signs

Messages and signs are in place to remind shoppers to keep a safe distance.

Public toilets 

There are new measures and restrictions in place at public toilets

Staying safe when shopping

Where possible:

  • Shop locally, and walk or cycle to the shops if you can
  • Follow the guidance in public areas and shops
  • Follow the guidance from stewards in public areas
  • Shop solo as much as possible
  • Keep a safe distance from other shoppers and shop staff
  • Use the hand sanitiser stations, and take hand sanitiser with you
  • Wear a face covering, read more about when you need to wear a face covering 
  • Use contactless payments in shops
  • Pay for car parking by phone where you can, see paying for car parking

The Council has launched a campaign to promote the safest way to use our high streets, see

For more guidance, see GOV.UK: Staying safe outside your home.

Staying safe when travelling

Follow the government safer travel guidance for passengers.

The Nexus website also has guidance for passengers on how to stay safe on metros, buses and the Shields Ferry.

What businesses need to do

Shops must follow local / national lockdown restrictions and guidance on how to work safely during coronavirus.

See what to do if a shop isn't following government coronavirus guidance.

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