LIFE returned to the streets of Didcot as businesses opened their doors to customers for the first time in months yesterday.

The temperamental weather did not put people off and by 10am streets in the town centre were already buzzing with excitement as queues were orderly formed outside barber shops.

Boswell’s Cafe erected a marquee outside

Boswell’s Cafe erected a marquee outside

Outdoor dining, non-essential shops and hairdressers reopened after Covid-19 restrictions were eased, as part of the second step in Boris Johnson's roadmap out of lockdown.

Fitness centres and indoor swimming have finally been given the green light to reopen and Hollie Randal, manager of Pure Gym in Didcot, revealed that dozens of people have already visited.

She said: "It is really good to be back at the gym and to be training.

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"It is important for people's mental health and opening this morning and seeing at least 50 members come through the door in the first 45 minutes was really nice.

"I know some people have felt a little anxious to return but they quickly change their minds when they see how the system operates.

"This lockdown has been hard because I am so used to be training myself, so not being in this environment has been quite hard mentally."

Fitness fanatics were back at Pure Gym in Didcot

Fitness fanatics were back at Pure Gym in Didcot

No queues were spotted outside of clothing shops like H&M or Next, however, customers flocked to barbers and beauty salons in a desperate need of a trim.

At least a dozen men were seen lining up outside of The Barber Shop on Broadway, which opened at 7am, and those at the front had already been waiting for at least 45 minutes.

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Father and son James and James Costner who live near the salon had been waiting for 15 minutes.

They were both planning to get the classic 'short, back and sides' after not having had a haircut since before Christmas.

The two were towards the back of the queue, so they had awhile to wait but they both agreed 'it is worth it'.

Publicans were also manic in the morning as they prepared to start pouring pints from as early as 11am.

Paul French, publican of the Broadway pub in Didcot, half an hour before he welcomed the first punters

Paul French, publican of the Broadway pub in Didcot, half an hour before he welcomed the first punters

Paul French, licensee of the Broadway pub, used the time during lockdown to spruce up the building, paint the walls and put new carpets in; however, he said he was ready to return to work.

Mr French confirmed that he has not been taking any bookings and will let people walk in and grab one of the tables at the front.

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He commented: "Pretty much every time I go out,or anyone else from the team, we get asked by people when we are opening and when they can get a pint.

"Plenty of people have tried to be sneaky and get a pint first.

Mr French was also not discouraged by the weather and said that punters will still come out because they are 'made of tough stuff'.

He also added that quite a lot of money has been invested to make the pub Covid-safe but that the South Oxfordshire District Council has looked after them very well.