ENTERTAINMENT

GUY ADAMS visits stores in Wales to investigate bizarre new coronavirus shopping rules


The security guards looked nervous when we entered the huge Tesco megastore & # 39; Extra & # 39; yesterday at lunchtime. trudged at the gates of Newport. And who can blame them?

About 24 hours earlier, they had confronted a local named Chris Noden, who had rolled his car over the threshold completely naked except for his underpants, a face mask and some extravagant tattoos.

"Clothing is not considered essential now," announced Noden's wife, Dawn, who followed directly behind.

Mark Drakeford (Wales' First Minister) said they were not material. Your business guidelines say they are not essential. So let him in! & # 39;

Socks were allowed, but no tights. Baby clothes were available for purchase, but the aisle selling toddler equipment was blocked. Guy Adams can be seen upstairs in a supermarket in Wales

A heated discussion ensued during which the unfortunate security guard insisted that clothing is indeed very important if you are to enter the sacred corridors of Tesco.

In a video of the incident, which went viral quickly after being uploaded to Facebook of the stunning dawn, the couple were given strict advice that if they had a problem with the condition they should "take on the government."

You won't be the only ones doing this, judging by the angry gamers I met on a surreal tour of Spytty Park, an out of town mall just off the M4.

In Boots, they had responded to recent edicts from the Welsh First Minister's shopping stasi, which banned the purchase of goods that were classified as "not essential" by banning the sale of aftershave and make-up.

Socks were allowed, but no tights. Baby clothes were available for purchase, but the aisle selling toddler equipment was blocked. Hairdryers were banned, but for some reason they still let people buy Brita water filters.

"Ridiculous," said Pat Rees, who had stopped by to pick up a prescription for her elderly mother.

The security forces looked nervous when we trudged into the huge Tesco megastore "Extra" at lunchtime yesterday at the gates of Newport. And who can blame them? About 24 hours earlier, they had confronted a local named Chris Noden, who had driven his car over the threshold completely naked except for his underpants, a face mask and some extravagant tattoos

The security guards looked nervous as we entered the huge Tesco megastore & # 39; Extra & # 39; yesterday at lunchtime. trudged at the gates of Newport. And who can blame them? About 24 hours earlier, they had confronted a local named Chris Noden, who had rolled his car over the threshold completely naked except for his underpants, a face mask and some extravagant tattoos

“You say things are not essential, but nothing matters until you need it. Hairdryers aren't strictly necessary until you break. And who the hell is Mark Drakeford telling me I can't buy lipstick? & # 39;

At Tesco, they actually banned books. Black and yellow tape with crime scene prevents access to shelves "according to government guidelines" – no scary historical precedents! – although, strangely enough, magazines are initially for sale on the shelves opposite.

Meanwhile, a six-foot wall of toilet paper was erected at either end of the clothing department to prevent middle-class shoppers from updating their wardrobes.

And with the rain forecast expected to last until halfway through and Welsh families will be banned from leaving their homes, sales of seditious middle-class products such as board games, toys, puzzles, DVDs and video games have been banned.

"This is crazy," said Mark Evans, who I met at the Tesco pharmacy.

“You just told me I can't buy an electric shaver because the government says you can't sell anything that's battery powered. But they sell regular razors six feet away. They talk about the shit. It's the arrogance of power, isn't it? & # 39;

Elsewhere, there have been rumors (currently unconfirmed) of cashier assistants in some stores banning the sale of pumpkins to buyers who intended to turn them into Halloween lanterns (only those who used them as food were supposedly allowed at the checkout counter past.

In Cardiff, the Mail visited a The Range outlet where shoppers were interviewed about the purpose of their visit before they were allowed to cross the threshold.

This absurd state of affairs stems from the Drakeford Labor Administration's decision to lock Wales – in accordance with Keir Starmer's UK policy – for a 17-day period from 6pm on Friday for a period of 17 days. Seeking to stop a "second wave" of Covid.

Similar to March, it was made illegal to leave the house for almost any reason other than exercise, (some) work, and visiting shops selling groceries, fuel, and other "essential" supplies.

This time, however, they have decided to go one step further.

In a step almost unprecedented in Britain outside of the war, they have decided which “essential” buyers may be placed in their baskets.

Elsewhere, there have been rumors (currently unconfirmed) of cashier assistants in some stores banning the sale of pumpkins to buyers who intended to turn them into Halloween lanterns (only those who used them as food were supposedly allowed at the checkout counter A book aisle is sealed off with duct tape

Elsewhere, there have been rumors (currently unconfirmed) of cashier assistants in some stores banning the sale of pumpkins to buyers who intended to turn them into Halloween lanterns (only those who used them as food were supposedly allowed at the checkout counter A book aisle is sealed off with duct tape

Because of this, written instructions were issued on Thursday – approximately 24 hours before the lockdown began – banning the sale of a wide variety of products, including clothing, housewares, toys, phones and electrical appliances.

The lengthy document that outlined the move states that stores that are allowed to stay open must ensure that areas where they normally sell these products are "cordoned off or emptied and closed to the public."

Keyword outrage. And while Mr Drakeford claimed the rules were designed to make things "fair" to retailers that had to close during his lockdown, critics pointed out that shoppers would simply post their habits online.

As North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones put it, "only online sellers like Amazon will benefit".

Other political opponents consider the concept of government intrusion into the contents of people's shopping carts as sinister.

"It's regulation after regulation, a constant barrage, like in one of those Eastern European dictatorships where they made lists of everything people could and couldn't do," said Andrew RT Davies, Tory shadow health spokesman for Wales.

“They say they are doing it to protect the country. But when they shot people climbing over the Berlin Wall, they said the same thing.

“The rhetoric is the same, and the sad thing is that it despises not only these rules, but all the rules put in place to fight this pandemic. In fact, it made Wales a mockery. & # 39;

In some areas things started to get seriously uneasy when the new directive came into force. In Bangor, a Gwilym Owen marched into another Tesco store on Friday evening and began tearing apart plastic sheets that were preventing shoppers from accessing children's clothing. "Tear off the fucks!" he cried. & # 39; Children & # 39; fuck clothes! It's a bloody shame! & # 39;

Mr. Owen was arrested and charged with criminal harm and a number of public order violations.

In Cardiff, a woman named Chelsea Jones, whose daughter was hospitalized late Saturday, told the BBC that she could not buy her child new pajamas to replace a blood-soaked set after the nearby supermarket refused to take care of her for sale.

"I drove around in a panic, trying to find a place to collect some important things for my child," she said.

“I've never been so angry, frustrated, or upset. You just never know when a "non-essential item" will become "essential" to you. I am not one to undermine the seriousness of Covid and always try my best to obey the rules, but those rules have to change. & # 39;

As surreal images of blocked-off shopping aisles flooded the internet, Drakeford announced that he will "review" the bizarre rules tomorrow

As surreal images of blocked-off shopping aisles flooded the Internet, Drakeford announced that he would "review" the bizarre rules tomorrow

Around 60,000 people have now signed a petition calling on the Drakeford government to do just that.

These include Robert Stone, a Penarth businessman who had spent hours in South Wales looking for paper for his computer printer. Two previous supermarkets sent him packing. However, Newport's Tesco Extra allowed the sale of stationery.

"I need paper to do my job because they won't let me into the office next week," he said.

“I just wasted half a day because of their stupid rules and went to three separate stores in two different cities. How does this help someone stop the spread of coronavirus? & # 39;

As surreal images of blocked-off shopping aisles flooded the Internet, Drakeford announced that he would "review" the bizarre rules tomorrow.

However, its senior ministers yesterday insisted that the rules be clarified, not scrapped.

There is one more place in Wales where clothes, books and even a keg of draft beer can be freely bought and sold: Cardiff International Airport. And who owns and operates it? Why, Mr Drakeford's Welsh Government.

Wales faces another “ceasefire” after Christmas: Welsh ministers warn that several lockdowns will be required until the vaccine is found – as they admit the ban on “trolley police” for non-essential businesses Goods are sold NOT working

Posted by James Tapsfield, MailOnline Political Editor

Welsh ministers announced yesterday that they are planning another ban on "fire breakers" after Christmas – admitting that the "trolley police" ban on stores selling non-essential goods is not working properly.

Although the 17-day pressure had only been in place since Friday, Deputy Secretary of Commerce Lee Waters urged people to prepare for a repeat in January or February.

The warning came when First Secretary Mark Drakeford signaled that the ban on stores selling non-essential goods should be reversed. He realized that the public was "fed up" and "common sense" was required.

A backlash has picked up speed, with the confusion that alcohol is considered "essential" but school uniforms, vacuum cleaners and hair dryers are not.

Supermarkets have actively taped the shelves of ordinary goods, blocked entire aisles or covered them with plastic.

However, critics have called the move "insane," saying the only person to benefit from it is Amazon owner Jeff Bezos, as shoppers only shop online instead.

First Minister Mark Drakeford said he realized that people were "fed up" when he pointed to a rethink on the draconian move and said "common sense" was necessary

First Minister Mark Drakeford said he realized that people were "fed up" when he pointed to a draconian rethinking and said "common sense" was necessary

On yesterday's Andrew Marr show on the BBC, Welsh Health Minister Vaughan Gething suggested that the Wales review examine why the rules are not being consistently applied

On yesterday's Andrew Marr show on the BBC, Welsh Health Minister Vaughan Gething suggested that the Wales review examine why the rules are not being applied consistently

Union leader Drakeford has been criticized for banning non-essential sales during the lockdown on the "fire break" and tweeted last night that people were "fed up".

Union leader Drakeford has been criticized for banning non-essential sales during the lockdown on the "fire break" and tweeted last night that people were "fed up".

The Welsh Government has also not been able to clarify which goods are classified as "essential". Instead, one minister said he hoped retailers had an "adult understanding".

More than 50,000 people have signed a petition calling on the Welsh government to lift the ban, which it has described as "disproportionate and cruel".

And last night, Mr Drakeford tweeted, “Thank you for all of your efforts over the past 24 hours to stay home. We know people are fed up.

Not essential or essential? What we know about which goods are banned in Wales' fire safety

First Minister Mark Drakeford has announced that non-essential items will not be allowed to be sold during the country's fire lockdown.

To date, the Welsh Government has not published a public list of the goods.

The supermarkets also didn't respond if they were given specific instructions on what they couldn't sell.

However, it appears that these items cannot be sold during the 17 days of restrictions:

  • Hairdryer
  • Stationary
  • water heater
  • Other kitchen items like microwaves and toasted sandwich makers
  • Phone chargers
  • Duvets
  • leaves
  • Electrical products
  • Scented candles
  • clothes
  • Children's toys
  • Towels and pillows
  • Wrapping paper

“It's not easy, but we all have a responsibility to stop the virus from spreading.

“We're going to check how the weekend went with the supermarkets and make sure that common sense is being used.

“Supermarkets can sell anything that can be sold in another store that doesn't have to close. In the meantime, please only leave the house if you need it. & # 39;

Welsh Health Minister Vaughan Gething suggested that the review investigate why the rules were not being applied consistently.

He told the BBC's Andrew Marr Show: “We are checking with supermarkets for understanding, clarity and guidelines as there have been different uses in different parts.

“We all need to take a step back and remember why fire safety was put in place to see that it is difficult for a lot of people, but we are in a week where there have been 61 deaths here in Wales.

“About a month ago there were only six deaths in a week, so the coronavirus is taking off. We see more people losing their love. & # 39;

He said the Welsh government worked with supermarkets on the ban and discussed what items would be affected.

"We will speak to them again on Monday so everyone understands what position we are in to clarify," said Gething.

& # 39; It's also about reducing the opportunity for contacts. That's what we're really trying to do – we're asking people to stay home to have a life. This is really exactly where we are. & # 39;

On the Sunday supplement on BBC Radio Wales, Waters said: "The projections and papers we published on our worst-case scenario predictions show that it is likely that we will need another fire in January or February."

He said the first and second lockdowns came too late and cases and deaths are rising again.

“We're doing our best to smooth the curve. We can't stop the curve, we can't stop the virus from spreading. Our best hope is to wait for a vaccine to get it under control. & # 39;

Mr Drakeford's tweet followed a statement by the Welsh Government earlier on Saturday insisting that the ban was "not on grounds of difficulty".

A spokesman confirmed that items found in other key stores – such as stationery and greeting cards – could still be sold in supermarkets during the lockdown.

Guidelines previously published by the Welsh Government state that certain areas of supermarkets must be "cordoned off or emptied and closed to the public" during the two-week period.

These include areas that sell electrical appliances, telephones, clothing, toys and games, garden products, and special areas for housewares.

Supplies for the "essential upkeep, maintenance and function of the household" such as batteries, light bulbs and rubber gloves can be sold during the lockdown.

Images posted on social media showed corridors where items such as children's clothing, greeting cards and books were blocked. Plastic sheeting has been placed over items to prevent buyers from accessing them.

Retailers have been told to sell only essentials, and so many supermarket aisles are cordoned off and products covered up

Retailers have been told to sell only essentials, and so many supermarket aisles are cordoned off and products covered up

Whole areas of supermarkets have been closed according to restrictions imposed by Welsh ministers

Whole areas of supermarkets have been closed according to restrictions imposed by Welsh ministers

The petition, calling for the ban to be lifted immediately, said: “We disagree that this is a prudent or rational measure and that it will cause more harm than good.

"For example, we disagree that parents should be prevented from buying clothes for their children while they are blocked from shopping."

Paul Davies, chairman of the Welsh Conservatives, said he had written to the chairman of the Welsh Parliament requesting that members be called back to discuss the ban.

He described the petition's popularity as a "clear sign" that the people of Wales want the rule to be "abolished immediately".

A video posted on social media showed a man tearing down plastic sheeting covering the aisles of clothes in a supermarket.

This week police revealed extraordinary plans to patrol the Anglo-Welsh border to prevent families from crossing for a half-time vacation as Wales was thrown into a two-week "fire break" lockdown.

Officials said they would try to prevent caravans from sneaking into England from Wales and prevent Welsh motorists from defying Mr Drakeford's "power-mad" orders to make "non-essential" trips.

Gloucestershire Police announced an operation covering stretches from Wales into the Forest of Dean where officials would prevent motorists from traveling to England to find out what they were doing.

Drivers would be encouraged to turn around and return to Wales if officials "are not satisfied with their explanation," a spokesman said. If they refuse, the police will notify the armed forces in Wales so they can impose fines.

Drivers were later seen crossing the border on the A494 in Queensferry and on the A5445 between Chester and Wrexham in a violation of the new restrictions.

Mr Drakeford has threatened to use license plate recognition cameras to punish English drivers entering his country.

His appeal was confirmed by Scotland's first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, who threatened to introduce a similar travel ban across Scotland to discourage people from traveling from virus hotspots in England.

Clothing: In addition to children's clothing, shirts for adults were taped in the same shop in Cardiff Asda on Friday

Clothing: In addition to children's clothing, shirts for adults were taped in the same store in Cardiff Asda on Friday

Clothing: Underwear and women's shirts, dressing gowns and even bras were banned for customers in this Tesco store in Wales

Clothing: Underwear and women's shirts, dressing gowns and even bras were banned for customers in this Tesco store in Wales

However, the Federation of Police of England and Wales has determined that the ban is "unenforceable". Additional police work, which "is already overloaded due to the pandemic", would be made more difficult by the measure.

Wales was thrown into a draconian "fire safety" lockdown at 6pm yesterday and is expected to ruin the Welsh economy.

As part of the measures, which will last for 17 days, people will be asked to stay home and only leave for a limited number of reasons, including exercise, buying staples, or seeking or providing care.

The MPs are affected by the extreme restrictions. Tonbridge and Malling MP Tom Tugendhat has beaten the Welsh government for "destroying" jobs on the main road.

He went on social media and wrote, “This is how you are destroying jobs on the main street and pushing them online. What shops can't sell, Amazon will deliver. & # 39;

Meanwhile, supermarket employees covered kettles and phone chargers on the shelves when Mr Drakeford banned the sale of "non-essential" items.

Tesco and Lidl staff became Wales' first "trolley police" as they hid shelves of "non-essential" items behind plastic wrap to deter customers from buying them before the restrictions began yesterday were introduced earlier.

Plastic barriers and stacks of beverage crates were also set up to block off certain aisles, while other items were taped off by staff to comply with the draconian new rules.

In other major supermarkets, Sainsbury's staff worked around the clock to make changes while Waitrose reviewed government guidelines and Asda claimed it had "very little time" to implement the new rules.

Four employees at a Tesco store in Pontypool could be seen inspecting the cover-up for a 20-minute test run before the latest restrictions went into effect. Witnesses admitted they had never seen anything like it.

Mr Drakeford described preventing supermarkets from selling non-essential products during the fire lock as "a simple matter of fairness".

The Wales union leader couldn't hide his frustration when asked repeatedly about the restrictions, which have now been in place for 17 days. He said they were "fair" and crucial in stopping the virus from spreading.

He said at a press conference in Cardiff on Friday that any suggestion that the ban announced on Thursday was based on his own policy was "nonsensical".

He said: “We are asking hundreds of small businesses to close on the main road across Wales.

“We can't do that and then allow supermarkets to sell goods that these people can't sell.

“And we try to minimize the time people spend outside their homes in that two-week period.

"This is not the time to go shopping for non-essential items in supermarkets."

He said trying to find exemptions from the rules was "just the wrong" approach and urged the people of Wales not to use the ceasefire to do things they don't have to.

"It's a simple matter of fairness – we're here in Wales together," he added.

He was criticized for the stance by TV presenter Kay Burley, who argued that her hair dryer was a necessary item despite the Welsh guide claiming it had been classified as "not essential".

Supermarket shoppers in Wales yesterday claimed sales of comforters, bedding and electrical appliances had been stopped by Tesco employees who had covered shelves with plastic.

Tesco customer Jamie Cole, 31, said the aisle with kettles and phone chargers is also "completely closed" despite being "needed" as temperatures gradually drop across the country.

Mr. Cole said, “I was shocked, it's pretty bad. Bedding should be available for children and mothers. We're coming into winter, it's cold outside, I couldn't believe it.

“I don't have children of my own, but my girlfriend and sister have children, she's also pretty shocked. You rely on Tesco as it is the only supermarket in our town.

“That was at 10:49 am today, the restrictions won't come into effect until 6 pm and all other supermarkets are fine. The employees only follow orders, it happened so quickly. They just announced it around 7pm last night.

“I'm 30 years old and I've never seen anything like it in my life. You follow the rules then do this, it's pretty intimidating. There was another corridor that was also completely closed, namely the stationery corridor and the electrical system.

“If you needed a kettle or a phone charger, this aisle was completely closed. I've done some homework and there isn't a key items list on the Wales government website.

"I think it's the supermarket that decides which items are important."

A Tesco spokesperson confirmed to MailOnline: "Our colleagues across Wales will be working incredibly hard today to comply with the Welsh government's ban on selling" nonessential "goods to our customers from 6pm this evening."

It came after Mr. Drakeford was caught being toasted over his ban on the shops selling the items in his lock.

The Labor First Minister couldn't hide his frustration when asked repeatedly about the restrictions, which went into effect at 6 p.m. for 17 days.

He insisted that they were "fair" and crucial in stopping the virus from spreading.

However, when asked if it was “imperative” for parents to buy new school pants if their kids tear them up, Drakeford groaned, “It's just the wrong way to approach this whole business.

"We're back to the approach of how to bypass the rules for coronavirus."

He added irritably, "There is a greater price at stake here than whether or not you have to buy a candle."

Mr Drakeford insisted that it was unacceptable to allow supermarkets to continue selling clothing and other products while smaller retailers were closed.

"We're all here in Wales together," he said at a press conference in Cardiff.

"This is no time to go shopping for non-essential items in supermarkets."

Anger rose, however, when Welsh Health Minister Vaughan Gething made it clear that alcohol is a key element under the confusing new rules – but insisted that hairdryers don't.

He also acknowledged that a "line by line" list of products sold was "unusable" and hoped retailers would have an "adult understanding".

There are fears that this will mark a return to the scenes seen at the start of the pandemic, when there were rows above the contents of people's shopping carts.

Mr Drakeford said this afternoon that local restrictions have managed to contain the spread of the virus but not "turn it back".

He compared advances like Torfaen positively to areas in England like Oldham. But he said the "brief sharp shock" of a lockdown was now essential.

(tagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) Nachrichten (t) Coronavirus (t) Tesco