Well, there’s no easy way to get in or out now.
A sandbag blockade has been installed to stop people accessing the York barbershop which was closed after breaches of Covid laws.
It comes after the owners of Q Gentlemen’s Barbers tried to regain entry, says City of York Council – just a day after police and council officers raided the business on Wednesday, ejected staff and shut it down.
The action followed the Bishopthorpe Road business being issued with 12 fixed penalty notices for breaches of the Covid rules, with fines totalling £33,000.
They then ignored two orders to cease trading. The council led the operation to close the shop, with the support of North Yorkshire Police.
Now two huge containers of builders’ sand have been placed in front of the doorway to the barbers.
Changing the locks
A witness told YorkMix that they had seen four or five police officers stop traffic on Bishopthorpe Road yesterday.
This allowed a telehandler carry the sandbags to manoeuvre them into place in front of the shop.
Matt Boxall, the council’s head of public protection, said: “Unfortunately this shop is required to be closed.
“Yesterday we received information that the business had regained entry to the premises and were making preparations to open again to the public in contravention of the direction issued.
“We have therefore taken the step of placing sandbags across the door as an immediate short term measure to help prevent the shop being easily opened to the public again.
“It has been made very clear to the owners that upon demonstrating to the council that the owners can operate in a covid secure manner the restrictions will be lifted. We thank the public for the overwhelming messages of support for the action.”
A separate witness told YorkMix that the ‘closed by the council’ sign had been taken down.
They added: “Someone was changing the locks at the place earlier in the day. I don’t know if they were working for the barbers or the council.”
Three people have been arrested over the refusal to comply with coronavirus regulations.
A North Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “Officers carried out a warrant at businesses premises on Bishopthorpe Road in York on Wednesday (26 May 2021) morning.
“This was in support of City of York Council’s enforcement action against a barber shop for alleged breaches of public health restrictions related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Three men from York, aged 30, 24 and 18, have been arrested and released under investigation while Trading Standards enquiries continue.”