SHOPPERS continued to fill the streets and plunder high street stores despite the mounting concerns surrounding the spread of coronavirus.

One passerby remarked that it was "business as usual" as they headed for the H&M store in Brighton's Western Road.

The North Laine area, Churchill Square and North Street all remained bustling with activity as people dipped in and out of gift shops and more.

The Argus:

This comes after a government announcement late yesterday afternoon urged people to "be sensible" by "not mixing in crowds".

Prime Minister Boris Johnson detailed Britain's next steps in its plan to fight the spread of covid-19, urging people to avoid non-essential contact with others and avoid public gatherings in settings such as pubs, clubs and theatres.


Following the announcement, Brighton venues Concorde 2 and the Brighton Dome said they would be closing in a bid to halt the spread of coronavirus.

The Argus:

While shoppers continue to fill Brighton's stores - with supermarkets overrun with increased demand for items such as pasta, baked beans and toilet paper - many still expressed concerns over the current situation.

At the weekend, one passerby told The Argus it "doesn't feel like a Saturday" in a near-empty New England Street.

Meanwhile a shopkeeper in a North Street souvenir store stared at his phone with a frown.

The Argus:

"It says it is going to affect everyone, this coronavirus," he said.

"Do you believe that? I just want to get away from it all."

As government measures become more stringent to dampen the impact of the illness become ever-more stringent, the authority has predicted the retail and hospitality will take a significant hit.

To counter this, it has suspended business rates for shops, cinemas, restaurants and hotels with a rateable value of less than £51,000.

The Argus:

But, despite this, some stores have still decided to close, including the large Urban Outfitters shop which dominates the front entrance to Churchill Square.

A sign on the door reads: "For the safety and precaution of the community, all Urban Outfitters stores will be closed until further notice.

"We look forward to coming together soon, and we're still open at"