ONE of Darlington's best-loved butchers and pie-makers has had to temporarily close its town centre shop due to staff testing positive for Covid.

A notice on the windows of the Taylor's butchers shop on Skinnergate says it is has closed due to 'unforeseen circumstances' but hopes to re-open as soon as possible.

An initial statement published by the Taylor's management on Friday caused some concern among social media users and has since been removed, but an updated statement issued this weekend says: "These are testing times for all and being a small family business, we have had to adapt to the ever-changing rules and guidelines set over the preceding months.

"With regards to yesterday’s announcement we would just like to provide some clarity and reassurance to our valued customers.

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Taylor's on Darlington Skinnergate                                Picture: ALEXA FOX

"As soon as the first case was confirmed we took immediate action to ensure that the required employees were isolated and will be so for the appropriate time.

"The staff that have been in over the last couple of days have not been in direct contact with the staff currently isolating.

"When our staff are at work, we take all necessary measures to stay safe, follow very strict hand washing procedures and the shop is thoroughly cleaned multiple times a day.

"We have been working very closely with track & trace and environmental health through all this and following the advice that they give us.

"We appreciate these are worrying times and we don’t want our customers to feel unsafe coming to shop with us and we just want to ease any concerns people may have and apologise for any panic caused.

"We have acted very quickly and accordingly to ensure safety is key and will always prioritise employee and public safety above everything else."

The statement goes on to advise customers to visit the company's website and facebook page for further updates about the situation.

The office telephone number also remains active during the week for customer enquiries, orders and deliveries.

Darlington and Stockton Times:

The sign on the door of Taylor's on Darlington Skinnergate Picture: ALEXA FOX

The statment adds: "We thank you always for your support now more than ever.

"Stay safe and see you soon."

Taylor's is a much-loved shop in Darlington and can trace its roots in the town to a market stall set up in 1922.

It has since expanded into Ferryhill and Durham and opened a branch in Richmond Market Place in 2013.