Primark in Birmingham reopens after hundreds join queue

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The queue
Image caption,
People queued on the street outside the city centre store

Hundreds of people queued outside Birmingham's Primark, the world's largest, on the first day non-essential shops can reopen since lockdown began.

The store in Birmingham city centre opened at 07:30 BST to let people in as queues built.

Jaydee Darrock, from Studley, Warwickshire, was one of the first inside after waiting from about 07:00 and said it was "surprisingly calm".

"We thought it would be chaotic, it's not, it's quite nice," she said.

Image source, Jaydee Darrock
Image caption,
Floor markings can be seen directing people
Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
A customer comes prepared dressed in PPE

"They've got hand sanitiser stations when you walk into the store, it's very calm, there's not masses of people."

On Monday, shops in England selling non-essential goods could reopen for the first time in almost three months, with retailers introducing strict safety measures.

Covering 161,000 sq ft over five floors, Primark's Birmingham city centre store opened in April 2019.

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Queues died down after the opening, but built back up to about 50 people by mid-morning.

A female shopper who spent almost two hours in the store with her daughter said it had been "a delight".

"There was a very large queue because of the social distancing, but if you want something you have got to queue," the woman from Birmingham said.

"It took a long time but I bought a lot of dresses, nightwear and bras. I have missed it a lot and I'm really happy."

Some customers had fashioned makeshift face coverings from bandannas while a handful of others queued wearing medical-style visors.

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
Queues had built back up by mid-morning
Image source, Jaydee Darrock
Image caption,
Non-essential shops which have reopened, including Primark, have been told they must have social distancing measures in place

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