BIG Issue sellers are back in Bournemouth – for the first time in 22 weeks of lockdown.

The Big Issue has confirmed details of its plan for vendors’ return from Monday, April 12, to selling the magazine.

Mark Morgan, 54, who sells the magazine in The Square, Bournemouth, said: “I’m looking forward to seeing my customers again, my regular ones.

"Where I am I’ve got quite a few older customers and they are very loyal. It will be good to see them again.

"It will be good to be able to go shopping again and get clothes and things like that. I like to play snooker now and again but I haven’t been able to play for a while so getting into a snooker hall with a couple of friends will be good.

"It’s been hard for people. Just to get out, mingle and see people again. You don’t realise how much you miss it until it's gone.”

Measures taken by The Big Issue include the provision of PPE, contactless card payment equipment and the introduction of health and safety procedures in all distribution offices.

Julie Cherry, 51, who sells the magazine outside Waitrose, Winton, said: “I miss talking to people every day. It’s been a year basically on and off so it will be nice to actually talk to people that I used to see every day.

"I’ve seen a couple of my regulars when I’ve gone shopping and they always ask me the same thing: ‘When are you going back to work?’.

"I keep saying we can’t until non-essential shops can open.

"Hopefully, my regulars will be there but I really won’t know until I get out.

"Last time when I went out a lot of my regulars were self-isolating because we didn’t have the vaccine then.

"I hope now I see some people I haven’t seen for a long time.”

For more information or to locate your local vendor and buy an issue directly from them visit