HAMPSHIRE residents can enjoy a tipple now that off-licences are classed as "essential retailers" allowed to stay open during the coronavirus pandemic.

The list of retailers was updated today following reports supermarkets are selling out of some beers and wines.

The list of essential retailers put together by the Cabinet Office now includes "off-licences and licensed shops selling alcohol, including those within breweries".

Pubs and restaurants have been required to close under the new restrictions.

Most shops across Southampton have shut amid coronavirus fears.

High streets and shopping centres have been deserted after Boris Johnson urged the British public to avoid office, pubs, travel and social contact.

Meanwhile, Britain’s biggest retailers are introducing stricter measures at stores to ensure that customers stay safe as they pick up essentials, while other shops are closing their doors.

Tesco and Asda both plan to limit the number of customers allowed into their shops at any given time, and introduced other new rules.

Tesco boss Dave Lewis has written to customers saying staff will draw new floor markings in the checkout areas, install protective screens on checkouts, and introduce one-way aisles.

The list of "essential retailers" includes:

  • Off-licences and licensed shops selling alcohol, including those within breweries
  • Petrol stations
  • Newsagents
  • Bicycle shops
  • Home and hardware stores
  • Launderettes and dry cleaners
  • Garages
  • Pet shops
  • Post offices
  • Banks