Following the success of its pop-up earlier this year, Thirteen’s vibrant permanent Stockton store is gearing up to open safely on Monday 3 August in a prime spot on Stockton High Street.

David Ripley, executive director for customer services, said: “While this isn’t quite the opening we had planned, this is still hugely exciting for Thirteen and the ways we support customers. We’re really looking forward to greeting customers from next week in our fabulous store in a way that keeps them and our colleagues safe.

“Customers will be able to come in to find out more about Thirteen’s services, manage their tenancy and pay their rent, report a repair, access their My Thirteen account and get information about our homes for rent and sale and we’re really looking forward to helping people.”

Careful consideration has been given to making sure the store opens safely and there are a raft of measures in place to protect customers and colleagues including:

  • Monitoring the number of people entering the store to support social distancing, with a maximum of two people per household. Visitors will be greeted by a Thirteen host when they enter and given a proximity sensor which will register their details and time of entry, to support social distancing and test and trace requirements.
  • The wearing face coverings in line with government guidance for shops and retail outlets for added reassurance for everyone
  • Anti-bac stations at the entrance
  • A clearly marked queuing system outside the store, with social distancing markers
  • Directional signage in-store on the floor and on large media screens, with two metre social distancing in place at all times
  • Customers heading into the building being given a proximity sensor to keep hold of until they leave. This helps us monitor social distancing
  • Separate entry and exit points, with a one-way system inside
  • Having a full-time cleaner on site to keep all areas clean
  • Meetings with members of the organisation’s employability team, to help people into jobs and training, by appointment only

The store also features training rooms, kids’ play area, refreshments area and central iPad station, which will all open as soon as it’s safe to do so. In the meantime, the Thirteen hosts are on-hand to support customers with any information they might need.

David continues: “Our pop-up store was a huge success and showed that lots of people still really value face-to-face contact. We’re confident that we’ll deliver a great customer experience in our permanent home, while showing that we’re looking after everyone’s safety and wellbeing during these testing times.”

The store is at 145 Stockton High Street, next to ‘the hub’ (cycling and walking centre) and will be open from Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm initially.

For more details, call Thirteen on 0300 111 1000.