COVID-19 - Visiting shops in Swindon

Shopping is a little different at the moment and you should be aware of the key information below before heading out. Retailers can open as long as they make sure customers and staff are able to follow social distancing and public safety measures.

We will continue to work with businesses and partners to implement safety measures such as floor stickers, signage and queuing systems, to allow shopping areas to operate safely.

What have you put in place to make sure visitors and staff are kept safe?

We’ve been working closely with our partners and local businesses both in the town centre and at other shopping areas, to ensure measures are in place to keep the public safe. This includes clear signage and floor markings to remind people to socially distance. It also includes regular cleaning regimes, particularly for shared spaces such as benches.

If I go into the town centre, where can I park?

All council-run car parks are open. Please pay by phone where you can. More information about our car parks can be found in the car parks directory.

Can I get the bus into town?

We have been working closely with bus companies to make sure safety measures are in place and that customers using buses are following the advice given on buses and bus shelters. Social distancing measures are also in place at the bus station.

Will public toilets be open?

You can find the latest information here:

Are you going to be monitoring the town centre to make sure people are observing guidance?

Our partners at inSwindon will be monitoring this. We’ll also be monitoring the number of shoppers at peak times, encouraging people to shop at less busy times wherever possible.

Will emergency vehicles be able to get into the town centre?

Yes, emergency vehicles will have access to all areas of the town centre at all times.

I’m a business owner re-opening my shop, how do I mark out queuing areas?

Marking tape imageThe only tape permitted is the black and yellow diagonally striped tape, see picture. This should have a tape width of 50mm, cut to 400mm to mark points at 2 metres apart for customers to wait. If you have any questions or need any support with this, you can email

What safety measures are shops taking and how can I find out which are open?

Shop poster imageIndependent and national retailers are deciding when they are able to open, so you should check their websites or social media for further information. Each retailer is putting a range of safety measures in place, based on Government guidance, and they are required to display a sign like the one pictured, to say they have completed a risk assessment.

I’m a business re-opening, can I put tables and chairs outside my premises?

New government guidelines have removed the need for businesses to get planning permission to create outdoor seating areas, with a new fast-track temporary pavement licence now in place. Applications can now be processed in five working days to help businesses such as pubs, restaurants and cafes to open and operate safely. Hospitality businesses can submit their applications to the team or ask any questions by email at

Further advice about working safely can be found on the Government’s website.

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