As the lockdown continues and people across Torbay prepare to commemorate VE day at home this bank holiday weekend, Trading Standards teams are continuing to monitor the restrictions put in place to help keep everyone safe.

They are reminding hospitality and leisure businesses in the area that, with very few exceptions, all hotels, bed and breakfasts, hostels, holiday rentals, campsites and boarding houses should remain closed for commercial use until further notice.

Additionally, all restaurants, public houses, wine bars, cafes, canteens and other food and drink establishments must also close unless they are providing food for takeaway or delivery only.

Holidaymakers are also reminded that visiting Torbay for leisure is not regarded as essential travel and they risk receiving a fine from the police.

Cllr Rufus Gilbert, Devon County Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for Trading Standards, said: “Although the lockdown is due to be reviewed this week, we need our local businesses to continue to act responsibly and follow the Government guidance.

“The vast majority of businesses across the region have done well to comply with the measures so far, which is excellent. Thanks to them, and the way we have all changed our behaviour, infection rates here are slower and lower than in other parts of the country.

“But we can’t get complacent. It is now more vital than ever that we continue to abide by the restrictions the government have put in place in order to protect the NHS and save lives.”

Paul Thomas, head of Trading Standards business support and innovation, said: “This is a difficult time for everyone, particularly with much of the region’s industry reliant on the busy tourism season, but I encourage business owners to follow our advice and continue to comply with the restrictions.

“We are here to support businesses and consumers through this challenging period and we will continue to share updated advice and guidance as and when it becomes available.

“However, there are serious implications for those who choose to deliberately flout the rules, and any breaches of legislation will be taken seriously and investigated.”

If you think a business is open illegally, please report the matter by email to tradingstandards@devon.gov.uk.