A shop keeper in her 70s says she is pleased masks will become compulsory to wear in stores from July 24.

The Government announced this month that people will be required to wear face coverings in shops and supermarkets from this Friday.

Jean Harper, owner of the Masquerade Fancy Dress shop located on Langley Road, Watford, says she is happy with the new changes as it will help keep people safe.

The Observer reported last month that Mrs Harper and her husband, Robin, were facing a difficult decision on whether to reopen their store from June 15.

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Watford Observer:

The Masquerade Fancy Dress shop. Credit: Jean Harper

She said keeping her business shut for longer would put her in a difficult financial situation but reopening her shop means she would be putting herself and Robin at risk of Covid-19.

But, Mrs Harper has now said she has reopened her store but there are limited business hours. The store is open every Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 11am to 6pm.

Mrs Harper is now welcoming the changes to rules in wearing face masks.

She said: "I am pleased with the rules to keep everyone safe. I think most people will do their bit to help stop the spread of the virus, however, there are always a few people who will not wear masks.

Watford Observer:

Jean Harper and her husband, Robin. Credit: Jean Harper

"But when I see a customer wearing a mask I really appreciate it. It shows that they care about those around them."

Mrs Harper says since opening her doors again there has been a "slow response" but she is certain that customers having to wear face masks in her shop will not impact her business.

She added: "Overall I think the party trade has suffered a significant fall in sales - but it will bounce back.

"Our determination coupled with our sense of fun will see us through this difficult time.

"Hopefully people will get past the gloom at the moment and get back into the party mood."