A pet shop forced to close its doors by local trading officials, claiming it had broken lockdown rules, has now re-opened to customers.
Pet N Net, in Chesterton, Newcastle-under-Lyme, announced on its Facebook page: “Trading standards have just phoned us to say they made a mistake – we are a pet shop and we can open and trade as before using social distancing rules. We would like to thank everyone for their help, understanding and support.”
The store was forced to close after a visit from Newcastle Borough Council’s environmental health team.
Owner Carlton Morrey was told his business was a general store and not a pet shop.
Carlton, who has owned the business for 13 years after previously working there, told StokeonTrentLive: “The council said we had to close because we don’t sell pets. This shop has been a pet shop for 50 years. Up until about 15 years ago we sold pets.
“I was annoyed and fed up. The locals went mad. We have a lovely new fishing department and the lads who use it all kicked off. They thought it was ridiculous.”
Customers took to the store’s Facebook page to offer their congratulations on the change of heart. One, Shaun Cope, said: “I would have thought the shop’s name – Pet N Net – would have told them that you were a pet shop…doesn’t take much thinking about.”
StokeonTrentLive quoted a council spokesman as saying: “Although this is not a licensed premises it has been determined that the premises can be considered to be a pet shop within the current guidelines.
“Advice has been given to the premises regarding the current covid-19 secure restrictions and they have been permitted to open, while observing safe practices.”