With the announcement that COVID-19 restrictions, including legislated self isolation, will end in England, Bill Addy, CEO of Liverpool BID Company – which represents the interests of over 1,000 levy payers in Liverpool city centre – says it will be critical for people and business to be understanding and patient

“People will have different reactions to the ending of restrictions, the important thing is to be both mindful and empathetic. Whether it is mask wearing or distancing, for the city centre, for business across our varied industries, it is important we listen to concerns and are patient with each other.

Liverpool city centre is recovering and our economy is finding its feet once again. We are seeing our central streets covering retail, hospitality, leisure, commerce and culture become busy – over one million people are visiting Liverpool city centre each week. Our role is to make people feel safe and comfortable, not force them to behave in a way they do not feel ready for yet. Confidence is key.”

In terms of testing, he adds that it has been part of Liverpool for much longer than everywhere else and has been a critical tool in managing the spread of the virus.

“Liverpool is a champion of best practice in public health and this has been a key component of our strategy, working together across industries to unify our message. As the pilot for mass-testing 15 months ago, it has become part of our regular life and many would like to see it stay in place. We need to have an idea for business, for industries like hospitality and culture where staff may want to retain this option if they are working in close quarters or with the public face to face day to day, of how this tool to guard against the spread of Covid can be maintained.”