A Salford sunbed shop has been ordered to stop allowing customers to top up their tans in the midst of a pandemic.
Ten people were found on the premises either on sunbeds, waiting to use them or having just completed treatment when police visited the premises of Bronze Boutique Sunbed Shop in Market Way, Salford last week.
Salford City Council has now served a prohibition order on the premises requiring the business to cease any cosmetic treatment during lockdown. Failure to comply could lead to a £10,000 fixed penalty notice or prosecution with an unlimited fine on conviction.
Councillor David Lancaster, lead member for environment and community safety, said the actions were ‘unbelievable.’
“One in three people have the virus without showing symptoms and we know that it can spread much more easily indoors. Putting people’s health at risk for the sake of a tan is utterly irresponsible as well as illegal and both the customers and the business owner should have known better,” he said.
“We have been engaging with businesses across the city to explain the rules and the business support grants that are available to help them while they cannot trade and the public cannot be ignorant of the ban on non-essential shops and meeting indoors.
“We received allegations that this shop, which is not classed as essential, was opening several days a week and telling customers to ring the door-bell and ask for entry so we asked police colleagues to investigate. We and the police will now monitor the shop until it is legally allowed to re-open.”
PC Krys Urbaniak from GMP said: "We were called to a report of a non-essential business that was still operating under the current lockdown regulations. On arrival there were a number of people in the premises who were either waiting or receiving treatment, each person was issued with an FPN.
“We work in partnership with the local authority, who lead on engaging with local businesses to ensure COVID compliance. Where needed we will support any clear breaches and attend sites alongside them. Due to the current legislation, this type of activity is prohibited due to the potential for the continued spread of COVID-19, which may extend the dates of the next stages of the roadmap.
"Although it has been a long time since we were able to do normal things, we are on what we hope to be the final stretch. Let's work together to make sure we continue to reduce the spread of infection and are able to get out of lockdown by 21 June."