Primark has revealed its new mask rules for when Covid restrictions are finally lifted in England on July 19.
The retailer has announced that it “hopes” customers will continue to wear face coverings, although it did not say they would be mandatory.
It comes as the Government presses ahead with ending all lockdown measures on July 19, despite rising infections.
Meanwhile Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty has sounded the alarm over a potential “scary” growth in hospitalisations.
Revealing its new mask rules from July 19, Primark told the Manchester Evening News: “We want our customers and colleagues to continue to feel safe in our stores.
“Even though it will no longer be a legal requirement, we hope that people will continue to think of others and wear a face covering if they can.
“Across all of our stores in England we will continue to offer hand sanitisation stations, have Perspex screens up at our tills and operate an enhanced cleaning programme, to help keep everyone safe.”
Primark has revealed its new rules on masks after many of the big supermarkets said they thought it was a good idea to keep wearing face coverings.
Aldi said customers will be encouraged to wear a mask from Monday, but the supermarket will not enforce this.
A spokesperson for the retailer said: “From Monday July 19 we’ll continue to encourage customers and colleagues to wear face coverings when they’re in store.
“Other measures like hand sanitiser and screens will also stay in place. Face masks are still required for customers and colleagues in our Welsh and Scottish stores, in line with the latest guidance.”
Meanwhile, Asda also encouraged customers to keep wearing face coverings.
The retailer will have signage and announcements on Asda radio in store to encourage customers to follow the government guidance on face coverings.
It will also provide face coverings at the front of store for customers who wish to wear one.
Lidl says face masks will not be required but that it will follow government guidance.
So if Number 10 decide masks are needed again, you’ll need to wear one to visit the discount supermarket.
Sainsbury’s is adopting the same approach, with the retailer’s chief executive Simon Roberts saying: “As we respond to the recent change in government guidance, we know that safety is still top of mind for many of our colleagues and customers.
“Our colleagues’ safety is vital and many of our colleagues would feel more comfortable if those who can wear face coverings continue to wear them.
“We’re asking everyone to be considerate and, while we understand wearing a face covering will now be a personal choice, we want to ensure we best support and protect each other in the weeks and months ahead.”
Anyone working or shopping in a Tesco supermarket will be urged to wear a mask, which a spokesperson said was to “be on the safe side”.
The chain will also be limiting the number of customers in-store and carrying on with its policy of using separate entrances and exits.
Waitrose said customers could wear a mask at their own discretion. The same rule applies to John Lewis, the sister company of Waitrose.
M&S and Morrisons have not yet revealed what its face mask policy will be from ‘Freedom Day’.