Service to customers

"All Clear" and "Siren Shopping"

By Susan Hall

The following articles appeared in the Welwyn Times:

 Thursday, September 5, 1940, page 1

“All Clear” service to cutomers

 The Stores’ management had decided that facilities shall be available for Customes who have been prevented by air raid alarms from making their purchases at the Stores.

Should the “All Clear” signal be given up to a quarter of an hour before closing time the Store will re-open until normal closing time. Should the “All Clear” signal be given between a quarter of an hour of closing time and a quarter of an hour after closing time, the Stores will reopen for a quarter of an hour after the “All Claer” signal has been given.

This means that

Should the “All Clear” be sounded at 5.45 the store will re-open until 6.0

Should the “All Clear” be sounded at 6.0 the Stores will re-open until 6.15

Should the “All Clear” be sounded at 6.15 the Stores will reopen until 6.30

If the “All Clear” be sounded after 6.15 the Stores will not be re-opened, but such customers as remain in the Stores will be served.

The above times are examples of what would happen during the first part of the week, but on Fridays and Saturdays the necessary adjustments will be made inaccordance with our closing times.

It is in the interest of our Customers and staff alike that shopping be done as early in the day as possible. With the frequent suspension of shopping due to air raid alarms it is more important than ever that last-minute rushes should be avoided.

The co-operation of our customers in this matter will be of great assistance.


The following appeared on Thursday, September 19, 1940 page 1

“Siren Shopping…

Arrangements have been made for customers to be served with essential foodstuffs during air raid alarm periods.

Customers already inside the Stores building will proceed as usual to the Book department.

Volunteers from the staff will be in the Food Hall and at the Grocery counter. Customers who wish to make food purchases will be served in rotation and will be directed in small groups to the food counters.

After food purchases have been completed they may either leave the building via the creche(alongside main entrance) or return to the Book department.

Customers outside the building when the siren is sounded may enter the creche, and those who wish to make food purchases will be allowed to do so after those already inside the building have been served.

It must be understood that customers who choose to shop during such periods will accept the risk involved.

Should bombs fall in the vicinity , or enemy aircraft be over head, the service will cease immediately, and customers will proceed at once to the Book department.

These arrangements are of an interim character and have been made to provide the maximum convenience for customers consistent with reasonable safety.


This page was added on 20/03/2015.

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