INDEPENDENT shops in Bournemouth town centre have been busier than ever since reopening after lockdown.

The high street has been flooded with shoppers looking to splash the cash after months inside, much to the joy of independent retailers who reopened on 12 April. 

READ MORE: Bournemouth's most popular post-lockdown shop revealed

READ MORE: Shops reopen across BCP on April 12 as restrictions ease

Non-essential shops were allowed to reopen as part of the second stage of Boris Johnson's roadmap out of lockdown. 

Luke Dennison co-owner of Ashes Menswear on Christchurch Road said: "We were far more nervous coming out of this lockdown than we were the last and we're still waiting for the dust to settle."

Having been open for two weeks, Luke said: "The first week of reopening was very busy because we still had school holidays, the weather was nice and it was the first week back. 

"There was a bit of a double-bubble which was nice to get involved with and it kickstarted us into working again."

While huge queues formed outside of retail giants Zara and Primark, some of our beloved independent retailers have also seen a huge influx of customers. 

Olivia Green, shop assistant at Parade Vintage on Albert Road said: "Lockdown was okay because we have a Depop account so we were doing alright but since we've been open it's literally been amazing.

"Last week when we reopened it was really good and now it's just gone straight back to normal if not, even better than before." 

Bournemouth Echo:

Parade Vintage on Albert Road in Bournemouth.

Although independent shops in Bournemouth town centre have seen a busy couple of weeks, that doesn't mean they are out of the water just yet.

Choosing to actively support local businesses by venturing off the main street and looking around the smaller shops helps to keep our high street vibrant and unique.

George Clifton manager at the skate shop No Chaos on Albert Road said: "Opening day was really busy but it's died down a bit now and the foot traffic doesn't really come up to our shop as much."

No Chaos is a new store that opened during the middle of the pandemic, George said: "A lot of people don't realise we're here because we opened up in July and have spent three-months in lockdown.

Bournemouth Echo:

George Clifton, manager at No Chaos on Albert Road.

"The aim for the store is to become more than just a shop, we want to be a community hub for people to come, chill out and be safe.

"I think it will just get better and better as people start to venture out and come up this way a bit more."

Independent businesses are the heart and soul of our high street and supporting them is arguably more important than ever.

Mr Dennison said: "Industry is strong in Bournemouth and it all feeds one another - I think it will all come back and we need to keep the positive vibes coming and keep people shopping on our high streets."  

Have you visited these independent shops yet or know of any that need a shout out? Let us know in the comments.