Coronavirus has emptied our high streets and forced many businesses to close temporarily or move online.
Getting people back into shops is crucial for many traders, but we need to do this safely when the time is right.
That’s why the Government has announced a new £50 million fund for councils in England to prepare for the safe reopening of high streets.
I’m pleased that councils in Kent will be getting their share of this funding. Maidstone Borough Council has been allocated £153,551 while Swale Borough Council is due to receive £134,057.
This new money will support practical measures so that businesses can re-open quickly when they are allowed to, people can get back to work, and customers can return to shops with confidence.
This will include practical measures like new signs, street markings and temporary barriers.
Councils will also be able to use this money to develop local marketing campaigns to explain the changes to the public and reassure them that it’s safe to return to town and village centres again.
The Government hopes to allow more shops to open from 1 June, subject to scientific advice.