Long queues have formed outside a popular shop this morning – as it prepared to reopen for the first time since lockdown.
The queue for the Laura Ashley store stretched back as far as B&M within Congleton’s Barn Road Retail Park.
Shoppers had formed an orderly line well before the branch reopened at 10am today.
One shopper said: “The car park was packed. It is like Christmas has come early.”
Its closing down sale – which started today – has seen fashion prices slashed by half and 30 per cent off furniture.
Coronavirus safety measures include limits on the number of shoppers allowed in the store at any one time, regular deep-cleaning, and customers encouraged to pay by card.
A Laura Ashley spokesman said: “There are some fantastic deals to be found in the store. Everything is now reduced and with at least 50 per cent off fashion we expect clothing ranges to sell out fast.
“We are extremely mindful of the current Covid-19 crisis and customers can be assured that the store will be Covid-19 secure.”
Laura Ashley called in administrators earlier this year.
In April, a deal was struck which secured a sale of the Laura Ashley brand to Gordon Brothers. But the deal did not include any of its 147 stores, nor its manufacturing and logistics operations in the UK or Republic of Ireland.
Laura Ashley began in the 1950s, quickly becoming famous for its unique printed fabrics. Over time, the brand grew to become the household name of today, synonymous with quality fashion, interiors and home furnishings.
Despite the store closures, the Laura Ashley brand will remain online and at retailers nationwide.