Gardners has announced it has reinstated its home delivery service, after temporarily closing last week due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The move will allow bookshops to service remote customer orders from their websites or via telephone.
The wholesaler confirmed it had "managed to set a safe working environment for a team of staff, adhering to guidelines previously set out, and working comfortably within current government guidelines."
Customers will be restricted to ordering one book per order, to preserve the safety guidelines surrounding minimal handling of items.
Orders will be restricted to books currently in stock, but Gardners said it had 400,000 lines in in its warehouse, alongside its 2.8 million e-book and audio titles.
Nigel Wyman, head of business development at Gardners, said he was also hoping to re-open its indie-oriented consumer website The Hive "very soon" too.
Booksellers responded positively on Twitter to the news. Booka Bookshop tweeted: "Really appreciate the lengths you’ve gone to to deliver a safe and workable solution to support the indie bookselling sector".
In response to a question about delivering to bookshops, Gardners added: "That will follow in due course, we are reviewing each area as we go, first an foremost our staff need a safe working environment".