Car dealerships were allowed to reopen yesterday as the government eased lockdown.

One of the dealerships that has reopened is the Pebley Beach unit on Paddington Drive. 

The showroom is open but only with an appointment and other social distancing methods have been introduced such as unaccompanied test drives and home delivery.

Dominic Threlfall, managing director of Pebley Beach, said: “It’s the first day we’re allowed to open the showrooms. 

“I’ve taken the decision that we won’t be open to members of the public except for appointment only. We’ve had four groups of people come in who have booked in and that’s how we’re managing it. 

“Every time a car is touched we have signs that go in them saying do not touch until we clean and sanitise it. We’re basically escorting customers around the premises wherever we can to minimise the risks. 

“It’s a little bit challenging but we’re getting used to it.”

Dominic added that the workers will be having staff meetings to discuss what is and isn’t working and to make sure everyone feels safe.

And there could even be some positives to come out of the new methods.

Dominic explained: “This might be the new normal. There are some very good things that are happening.

“Arguably if a member of the public drives a car we should possibly be wiping the steering wheels anyway, it’s something we have never done as an industry before but it’s no bad habit. 

The Dick Lovett showrooms have also reopened with a variety of measures including a 2m social distancing rule, cars being sanitised and locked and screens to protect staff and customers.