Barber hoping to open at Level 2

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Ready to snip back into action . . . Selwyn Grave stands outside his barber shop in Moray Pl. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

After 65 years in business, temporarily closing the doors on his Moray Pl barber shop was a sad moment for Selwyn Grave.

“It was the first time ever,” he said.

Mr Grave has been a hairdresser since 1954 and opened his first business in 1961. He has been in Moray Pl for majority of the past 50 years.

He has been unable to work since the Alert Level 4 lockdown began and was “very much” looking forward to opening the business again — hopefully at Level 2.

Hopefully we will because there’s a lot of desperate people out there wanting a haircut,” his wife, Lynette, said.

While they were still waiting on the specific guidelines, she thought they would have to make some adjustments, such as spreading out the barbers and changing how people wait for their cut.

Mr Grave thought the Government’s actions towards businesses had been “very good”, and Mrs Grave said it was a relief to receive the wage subsidy.

They employed five staff, but one had gone on maternity leave during the lockdown.

During the Level 4, Mr and Mrs Grave had spent their time gardening, cooking, reading and going for walks.

“There’s not a lot you can do,” Mrs Grave said.

The Covid-19 pandemic was “surreal and challenging”, she said.

She felt lucky to be in New Zealand and that the borders were able to be closed relatively quickly.

“I think this is something that we’ll talk about forever.

“It’s part of social history now.”