Hair salons in Leeds braced for busy few weeks after getting green light to re-open
Hairdressing salons and barbers across Leeds are braced for a busy few weeks - or even months - after the announcement that they can finally re-open on Monday April 12.
At city centre salon Tint, co-owner Matthew Sutcliffe estimates his backlog of clients will stretch into June as people scramble for their long-awaited hair fix.
He said: “People are desperate to get their hair done but it’s important for us to keep the quality up and not rush to try and squeeze everyone in.”
As well as following the strict Covid-19 protocols it introduced early on in the pandemic, such as social distancing, wearing a mask, deep cleans and floor markers, the salon will this time also be increasing its air ventilation and embarking on regular Covid-19 testing of the staff team.
Matthew, whose staff were named ‘best salon team’ at Creative Head magazine’s Most Wanted 2020 awards last month, said: “Our priority is the clients and making sure they feel safe when they come in.”
Jon Kinsey, of Jon Kinsey salon in Oakwood, said their clients have been reacting as though they were “winning the lottery” when given an appointment.
He said: “I think people are desperate to see us. I always say we’re the ‘unofficial therapists’ - people have their hair done and like a chat with the hairdressers.
“People are feeling like they’re winning the lottery. They get the call and it’s like they’ve got the golden ticket.”
Jon said there are currently about 1,500 people on the waiting list, with more added every day.
He joked: “We’re a little bit nervous about how much hair we are going to have to cut - I think every single client is going to be re-style.”
But he added: “We’re very excited and can’t wait to be back at work. It’s nice to be able to see everyone and get back to normality.”
As well as hairdressers, shops and pub beer gardens will also reopen from April 12 in England but people must not be complacent about the risks still posed by coronavirus, warned PM Boris Johnson.
Confirming the next step on the road map out of lockdown, the Prime Minister also said the difficulties facing countries in Europe illustrated the risks still posed by the pandemic.
Speaking at a Downing Street press conference yesterday, Mr Johnson said: "We can't be complacent. We can see the waves of sickness affecting other countries and we have seen how this story goes.
"We still don't know how strong the vaccine shield will be when cases begin to rise, as I'm afraid that they will, and that's why we are saying please get your vaccine - or your second dose - when your turn comes."
Setting out the move to the second step of the road map, Mr Johnson said the shift was "fully justified by the data".
"And on Monday the 12th I will be going to the pub myself - and cautiously but irreversibly raising a pint of beer to my lips."
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