We understand you may be anxious about visiting retail stores at this time and want to reassure you of the social distancing measures we will have in place in our garden centres. We ask you to respect these guidelines – this is for your safety and the safety of our team members. Any customers not adhering to social distancing may be asked to leave.

Max 2 persons per group allowed into our stores

  • Please shop alone where possible. We will be allowing a maximum of two persons per household into our retail stores, and all groups of two persons must together whilst shopping –  this is for your safety.
  • We encourage customers not to bring children but appreciate this may not always be possible. We will allow one adult and one child to shop together. Customers who are accompanied by children are responsible for supervising them at all times, and they too must follow social distancing rules. If you would like to visit our stores with more than one child we would advise you to call the branch ahead of your visit, we can also recommend quieter times to visit our garden centres with children.
  • Where necessary we may limit the number of customers in our stores. At busy times you may find a queuing system in operation, this may require you to stand in a line outside the store very similar to the process in place at many grocery stores.

Please respect 2m distancing

  • Following the prime minister’s announcement on June 23rd, we will be retaining the 2m social distancing guideline and not reducing to 1m at this time. Our garden centres are in most cases large enough to allow for customers to keep 2m apart, and we believe this will help ensure your safety when visiting our stores. We would ask that you respect and adhere to the 2 metre social distancing guidelines at all times.  You will see 2m markings on the floor to around our stores and when queuing at the till points.

One-way floor markings

  • In some areas you will see we have created one-way aisles, please follow these floor markings at all times.

Please wash your hands before visiting our stores, and as soon as you return home

  • We encourage all customers to follow Public Health England guidance on hand-washing. We will be providing hand sanitiser for customer use.

Our stores may feel a little different

  • When you arrive: you may find new entrances and exits have been put into place to help keep a safe distance from other customers, signs will be in place to help you identify these.
  • Where possible please do not touch products unless you intend to purchase them. Team members will be available to provide product information.
  • Baskets and trolleys will be available, we are providing facilities for customers to clean and sanitise these between customer use.
  • We are asking all customers to please only touch products you intend to purchase, where possible.
  • Perspex screens have been installed next to our tills to provide protection, and there will be fewer tills open to ensure social distancing can be maintained, this may result in queues to pay.
  • Many of our team members will be wearing PPE, for their safety.
  • Your trip to Otter is normally one of leisurely browsing, however at this unusual time we would ask that time spent in the garden centres is focused on selecting your purchases, requesting any help as needed, and moving to purchase. This is for your safety and the safety of other customers and our team members.

Please pay by card using contactless payment where possible

  • To help reduce unnecessary contact, we encourage the use of chip and pin card payments and contactless payment when paying for your purchases. The contactless limit is now £45.


  • At this time our toilet facilities are open at all our garden centres, we ask that you only use these if essential.

Clothing and Shoes

  • Our clothing departments are open but all changing rooms are closed. We ask that clothes and shoes/footwear are not tried on. Please speak to any team member for help with clothes or footwear if needed.

Coffee Shops

  • Our coffee shops reopen on July 4th with a distinct set of safety guidelines, please CLICK HERE to find out more, and help plan your visit.

Restrictions in place

  • Our plant information desks will be closed.
  • Garden furniture: to ensure we can minimise contact with our display items there may be restrictions in place, please ask a team member for help when you arrive.

Please bear with us whilst we get used to this new way of operating our stores.

Although your shopping experience may feel a little different, we want to try and make it enjoyable and most importantly safe, if you have any concerns during your visit, please speak to any Otter team member.

This guidance may be updated or changed, please check back to see the latest guidance prior to any visit you plan to make.

Updated July 4th 2020.