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Public urged to use walk-in centre as shoppers come out in force Posted On 16 April 2021

Symptom-free test site set to open in Swaffham

 

The next step on the Government’s roadmap out of Coronavirus restrictions was greeted by sunny weather and a rush of shoppers into town centres across Norfolk.

This week’s milestone in the easing of lockdown meant shops selling non-essential items, pubs, gyms and hairdressers could welcome customers for the first time in ages.

And the public responded, streaming into car parks and giving small businesses across several sectors a welcome boost.

It brought relief to many – not least the customer at Blaines Electricals, who have branches in Swaffham, Dereham and Watton. She had been waiting almost four months to replace her oven which broke down a few days after Christmas because she didn’t want to buy online as “she wanted to see the lovely staff and have a full retail experience”.

Breckland’s Covid marshals were also on hand to ensure people behaved responsibly and observed social-distancing measures, and one told the Eastern Daily Press: “It’s great to see people using common sense.”

And officials are quietly hoping the Swaffham public’s attitude to their new-found freedom will see them make good use of the new symptom-free testing centre, which will open in the Assembly Rooms from Monday (April 19th).

It is being provided by Breckland Council and Norfolk County Council’s public health team in response to Government assertions that around one in three people can be infected with Covid-19 and show no symptoms, thereby innocently spreading the disease.

Sam Chapman-Allen, leader of Breckland Council, said in a statement: “These tests can help identify people who have Covid but no symptoms, ensuring they avoid spreading it to their friends, loved ones and within their communities.

“As people can just walk up to the testing site, I hope residents in and around Swaffham will make the most of the opportunity to access a test.”

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