Anne Cobb, proprietor of Eclipze Hair Studio in Dromore Co Down, has been closed since Christmas Eve.
Her three staff have been on furlough since then.
“We have been closed 10 out of the 13 months since the start of the pandemic,” she said.
“So we are really looking forward to seeing everyone again and getting back into our routine, although we completely understand why we were closed.
“However, we thought it was a bit puzzling why we had to close for so long when we have been so scrupulous in using our PPE and social distancing – it seems there is often little social distancing in big supermarkets.”
Her turnover has been reduced by up to 50% over the past year, she said.
But she has been greatly helped with national and local government grants and furlough support. Northern Ireland Electricity has reduced her bills and she has also appreciated the rates holiday.
“Although nothing can fully compensate for the loss of your revenue,” she added.
However, she is confident she has maintained her edge with lots of practice on her family. “My son has been getting his hair cut every week”.
With reopening to take place this Friday her phone has been red hot.
“We are booked up for the next three weeks. Everybody is dying to get their hair done. It gives people such a lift and people love to have a chat. A lot of people have a very personal bond with their hairdressers. I have had some clients for over 30 years. We are really looking forward to welcoming all clients back this Friday.”
:: From Friday the Executive has allowed the resumption of driving lessons and tests; close-contact services; outdoor visitor attractions; equine assisted therapy and learning; outdoor sport organised by a club, individual or individuals affiliated will be extended to include squad training; competitive outdoor sport organised by a club, individual or individuals affiliated; static band practice/rehearsals outdoors.
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