Christmas wrapping paper on sale at B&M but toys BANNED in latest bonkers 'essential items' row

CHRISTMAS wrapping paper has gone on sale at a B&M in Wales, but the toy's section is still blocked off in the latest row over "essential items".

Shoppers have been left furious after wrapping paper went on sale at a B&M in North Wales but the children's toy's section is taped off.

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It comes as the latest row over what items are "essential" were revised by the Welsh Government.

The revised list now allows for "stationery and greetings cards" which could arguably include products like wrapping paper.

Ministers had also eased up on the rules after an almighty spat over supermarkets refusing to sell sanitary pads and baby milk during the "firebreak" lockdown.

However, other items such as books, clothes and toys were banned as the firebreak lockdown was introduced in Wales on October 23.

Shoppers have expressed their fury at the list of "non-essential" items as a man was charged with criminal damage after he was filmed ripping down tape.

The decision to stop the sale of these items was to make sure create an even playing field between larger retailers like supermarkets and smaller businesses who were forced the shut.

First Minister Mark Drakefored had said he "not prepared to treat small businesses in Wales differently to bigger ones".

The Welsh Government said on Tuesday it had "positive discussions" with essential retailers and trade unions over the rules.

But restricting goods in supermarkets will remain in place until the end of the lockdown on November 9.

Now, there are 10 types of products that can be sold in Wales – including food and drink, and items "ancillary to the sale of food and drink" which includes kitchen foil and cling film.

Supermarkets can also sell toiletries and cosmetic products, including sanitary products – as well as baby products including equipment, clothes and nappies.

This latest list comes after Mr Drakeford said: "I recognise that there will be some people who for entirely unexpected reasons which they couldn't have foreseen will need to buy items.

"In those circumstances where those welfare reasons are at stake, we will make sure that our supermarkets understand they have the discretion to apply the rules differently.

He added: "Supermarkets can sell anything that can be sold in any other type of shop that isn't required to close. In the meantime, please only leave home if you need to."

WELSH GOVERNMENT’S APPROVED LIST OF ‘ESSENTIAL’ ITEMS

  • Food and drink.
  • Pharmaceutical products.
  • Newspapers and magazines.
  • Stationery and greeting cards.
  • Products linked to the sale of food and drink – mainly disposable items used for the preparation and storage of food like kitchen foil, food bags and cling film but also basic products necessary to prepare and eat food and drink.
  • Products for washing clothes and for cleaning and maintaining the home, including batteries and light bulbs.
  • Toiletries and cosmetic products – including sanitary products.
  • Baby products including clothes and nappies.
  • Pet food and other pet supplies.
  • Products for the maintenance of bicycles and cars.

It comes after a massive climbdown by the Welsh Government when they said it would speak to the retail sector to make sure the policy banning the sale of "non essential items" – intended to keep shop visits short – was being applied sensibly.

It comes after stacks of baby milks were slapped with a sign deeming them "non essential", causing fury from mothers

This week, Welsh shopper Katie was furious when she discovered she could not buy sanitary towels at the supermarket.

Tweeting the supermarket giant to complain, posting: “Can you explain why I was told today that I can’t buy PERIOD PADS as I’m sure they are essential to women ?!!!

“But I can buy alcohol – it doesn’t make sense.”

Wales's "firebreak" lockdown means non-essential retail, pubs, restaurants and gyms will all have to close until November 9 in an attempt to quell growing infection rates.

People have been given fresh stay at home orders and told not to go on long journeys.

Schools will close over the half term – this week – and all pupils below Year 8 will be able to go back to classrooms next week.

But older students must return to remote learning.

The Sun Online contacted B&M for a comment.


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