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Ikea to reopen 19 stores during UK lockdown

Sarah Butler
Photograph: AFP/Getty

Ikea is to reopen 19 stores in the UK on 1 June as it joins other furniture retailers planning to unlock their doors this weekend.

Only one adult and one child per household will be permitted in branches on each visit, while play areas and restaurants will remain closed.

The Swedish retailer’s food market will offer takeaway hotdogs, burgers and meatballs from its bistros.

Other measures to ensure safer trading during the coronavirus outbreak include “social distance wardens” to help shoppers navigate a new one-way system.

Britain’s biggest furniture chain said its smaller high street stores would not reopen yet, and its outlet in Coventry would remain permanently closed with the potential loss of 352 jobs. Ikea said it had found potential alternative positions within the group for about 100 staff.

Ikea’s plans come as the sofa retailer ScS prepares to open its 81 stores on Saturday, joining DFS and Furniture Village, which are also reopening stores in time for the bank holiday weekend.

The homewares chain Dunelm began unlocking stores on 12 May after it received permission from the government. The retailer has so far reopened 39 of its 171 stores.

Furniture retailers have resumed trading after the government clarified its definition of “essential” retailers on 13 May to say homeware stores were included, rather than its earlier definition of “home and hardware” stores.