EXCLUSIVE: Welsh KBB businesses CAN stay open in circuitbreak

Kitchen and bathroom retailers in Wales CAN stay open, kbbreview has learned.

The rules surrounding the temporary lockdown have been unclear since it was first announced but ‘non-essential retail’ was required to close, which many believed would include kitchen and bathroom showrooms.

However, kbbreview has now confirmed that, as long as some part of the business is supplying the construction market – such as developers or builders, it can continue to operate.

A Welsh Government spokesperson said: “Construction and manufacturing sector businesses can continue to operate, including those in the supply chain such as builders merchants.

“We are urging workers and employers in these sectors to continue to do everything possible to operate safely and reduce the spread of the virus during the fire-break period.”

This follows yesterday’s u-turn that reversed initial guidance saying installers and tradespeople were not allowed to enter customer’s homes.

This decision mirrors the Wren debate at the height of the initial national lockdown in May, when it was given permission to open as it was classed as building materials supplier. That news – also revealed exclusively by kbbreview – gave the de facto go ahead for all kitchen and bathroom showrooms to open if they wanted.

Early this week, the KBSA urged the Welsh government to clarify the guidance during the circuit break.

Kbsa national chair Richard Hibbert said: “We acted quickly earlier this year, liaising with government and trading standards to clarify the position for our members and the definition of ‘non- essential’ shops”.

“It is even more important that we have clarity this time, as any closures may be temporary.  The complications of a stop-start situation, especially during this busy period, when projects are in hand for a Christmas completion, are complex”.

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