'It's a new day': Lockdown locks go as Hartlepool hairdressers reopen
Staff and clients shared a happy reunion at a distance at one hairdressers in Hartlepool.
Ladies Room, in the town's Vision Retail Park, welcomed its first clients at 8am on Monday, April 12, as “non-essential” businesses opened in the latest phase of lockdown easing.
Salon owner Kirsty Wearmouth said she was nervous and excited to open the doors: "I feel like the first day back in school. I'm dead excited.
"It feels like a new day, a new salon. It's amazing to be back.
Lesley Stothart, 49, who has been a client at the salon since it opened three years ago, was one of the lucky ones who got an appointment on the opening day.
"There was going to be trouble if I wasn't booked in for the first Monday they reopened," said Lesley.
"I even took a day off work to come in. "
The project manager said she was looking forward to having regular beauty treatments again and hugging friends when restrictions are relaxed further.
She said: "The staff here are like a second family. I wanted to hug everyone when I came in."
Dale Stephenson, 39, who has been doing Lesley's hair for several years said: "It's good to get back to normality. It's nice to be back with everyone. Positive vibes only."
Lockdown has forced many to reinvent their beauty routines and experiment with treatments at home and the results have varied.
Kirsty added: "We've had a lot of clients who've had a home dye, so we're fixing those problems. We're giving them a good cut and a colour. They're desperate, it's been so long now."