PUBS, restaurants, hairdressers and Southend seafront attractions got back to business this weekend as people clamoured for a taste of the “new normal” by queuing, sanitising and maintaining a social distance.

The UK lockdown was further eased on Saturday and hairdressers’ chairs were full by 8.30am, queues formed outside Adventure Island and café and restaurant bosses donned visors and masks to welcome customers.

Businesses - some of whom have returned hundreds of workers from furlough - have taken radical steps to keep visitors and customers safe amidst the coronavirus outbreak.

Along the seafront, signs were in place to remind people to keep apart, with foot markings on the ground for when people queue up to use the public toilets.

In six of the arcades, owned by Star Amusements, 60 hand sanitising stations had been installed and a tracing system.

Designed by operations manager John Joseph, it asked people to either scan a QR code on their phone, or visit a link so they can securely enter their name and contact details, so the company can contact customers in case Public Health England need to do contact tracing.

At Adventure Island, the theme park had between 50 and 60 customers queuing to get in when it first opened.

On site are 220 hand sanitising stations, with all customer facing staff wearing protective masks.

Management brought 450 staff back from furlough. The park had the majority of its rides open.

In the High Street, markers were on the floor urging people to keep left, forming a makeshift one-way system with all newly-opened stores limiting the number of customers in at a time.

The Stylers Unisex Hair Professionals Salon reduced customer numbers from nine to five at any one time while Tomassi’s Café and Restaurant had screens installed between all booths.

In Leigh Old Town, all cars were banned from driving through the High Street amid fears of a repeat of last weekend’s parties.