Supermarkets shutter for Queen’s funeral

Close up of a red shopping basket in a supermarket aisle

Several major retailers have announced plans to close on Monday September 19, as a mark of respect for Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral. However, a number of operators are expected to keep some stores in London open, as they look to serve people lining up to see the funeral procession.

Elsewhere, some smaller stores are expected to open after 5pm.

The John Lewis Partnership will close its department stores and Waitrose shops on the day of the funeral and the company said that when full details of the funeral are confirmed, an exception may be made for a limited number of Waitrose stores on the route of the procession. Those shops will close for the funeral itself.

Andrew Murphy, chief operating officer, The John Lewis Partnership, said: “We are deeply saddened by the death of Her Majesty The Queen. We will be closing our stores on the day of her funeral as a mark of respect, and because we believe this is the right thing to do for our partners and customers.”

Tesco will close its large stores, while most Express shops will be open between 5-10pm. A small number of Express stores in central London and Windsor will be open throughout the day. The retailer will also cancel online deliveries on September 19. 

Tesco UK CEO Jason Tarry expressed condolences. He added: “In order for our colleagues to pay their respects, our large stores will be closed all day and our Express stores will remain closed until 5pm.”

Sainsbury’s is taking a similar approach and a spokesperson for the supermarket said all Sainsbury’s supermarkets and Argos stores will be closed on Monday September 19, with the exception of smaller shops.

“Our convenience stores and petrol filling stations will be open from 5pm-10pm to allow our customers to pick up essential items, while select stores in central London will open to serve those attending the funeral in person,” the spokesperson added. “We thank our customers for their understanding.” Sainsbury's online grocery will also be closed on the day. 

The Co-op has also confirmed closure plans. 

Shirine Khoury-Haq, Co-op CEO said: “We are deeply saddened by the death of Her Majesty The Queen. As a mark of respect and to give our colleagues, customers and members time to reflect and mourn, we will be closing our stores." Co-op stores and ecommerce oeprations will close until 5pm, with the exception of some shops in central London and towards Windsor. 

Both Lidl and Aldi also confirmed closures. 

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