Kingston prepares for the safe reopening of high streets across the borough

Kingston Council is working closely with Kingston First and other partners to prepare for the safe reopening of our town centre, along with other high streets across the borough.

Councillor Caroline Kerr, Leader of Kingston Council, said:

“We’re looking forward to being able to welcome everyone back into our town centres, but things will be a little different. We will all need to work together to share the space and keep each other safe. 

“We know that many businesses would like to reopen and we want to help by making the shopping areas feel safe and welcoming. We’re working with businesses to put in place measures to protect everyone who comes into town and enable social distancing.”

Kingston has introduced a number of measures to make public spaces safer, including creating temporary protected walking and cycle lanes, as well as three new school streets. These measures will be delivered as part of the London-wide ‘Streetscape programme’ designed to manage the changes to travel patterns in the capital and help movement as we ease from lockdown.

With public transport capacity restricted, these new measures will maximise safe opportunities for people to make journeys by foot or cycle rather than by car, as well as help people maintain social distancing in busy areas.

More information about the temporary measures can be found on our website.

Kirsten Henly, Chief Executive at Kingston First, said:

“Creating a safe and welcoming town centre for our colleagues, employees and visitors is our number one priority as we work together with the council and businesses to re-open the town in a co-ordinated and gradual way over the coming weeks. As part of our commitment to the town centre we have invested in an additional deep cleansing of the town’s streets, dressing and greenery to brighten up the streetscape and vibrant social distancing signage, floor stickers, posters and queuing markers which will appear across the town to help visitors and workers navigate the town safety.”

Forbes Law, Chief Executive at Kingston Chamber of Commerce, said:

“Kingston Chamber of Commerce supports all the work, planning and diligence that Kingston First, Kingston Council, with other key stakeholders, have been taking to make our borough high streets safe to open for business again. These early steps will need all of us to play our part, with empathy, understanding and patience, as we restore confidence in ourselves and back into high streets.”

If you have any suggestions for how we could improve our streets please get in touch at [email protected]

If you are a business owner, and need help with signage, the outside street spaces or co-ordinating how people may be able to queue and social distance safely in the streets near your business, please contact your Neighbourhood Manager at [email protected]. If you have a business in Kingston Town Centre, please contact Kingston First at [email protected]