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An exceptionally busy day at stores selling “non-essential” goods

After Friday evening’s announcement that all shops selling goods deemed to be non-essential must closed from Monday, Saturday is the last day of trading before lockdown for most of the retail outlet concerned. With the Feast of Saint-Nicholas on which children in the Low Countries receive gifts falling during the lockdown there were big queues outside many toy shops on Saturday morning. 

In Aalst, one area of Flanders where the Feast of Saint-Martin (11 November) in celebrated by treating the children there was a big queue outside the local branch of the toy retailer DreamLand.

Elsewhere, there are reports of hundreds of people waiting in line to get into the IKEA furniture stores at Zaventem (Flemish Brabant) and Wilrijk (Antwerp). There are large numbers of people queuing outside branches of the discounter store Action.

The photo below shows the scene outside the Action store in Schelle (Antwerp Province) In city centres too it is busier than normal. For example in the centre of Brussels there are queues outside a number of shops. 

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