The branch on Stonehenge Walk, Amesbury, closed on Friday (July 6) as a “precautionary measure at the request of the police, as part of their standard investigation protocol”, Boots told C+D.
The closure comes after two people – a 45-year-old man and a 44-year-old woman – were exposed to the nerve agent Novichok in the area on Saturday, June 30.
According to a statement from the Metropolitan Police – issued on July 6 – the man visited the branch of Boots at “around midday”, before returning to his home “around half an hour later”. At 6.20pm that day, an ambulance was called to his home address and he was taken to hospital.
According to Wiltshire Police, the Boots branch is one of five areas cordoned off as part of an investigation led by detectives from the Counter Terrorism Policing Network.
The multiple added: “Our team are available to direct patients towards our Salisbury Street store, where they will be able to access their prescription medicines.”
Detectives continue “meticulous work”
The Metropolitan Police confirmed yesterday (July 8), that one of the victims, Dawn Sturgess, had died following her exposure to Novichok. The incident is now being treated as murder.
“Detectives will continue with their painstaking and meticulous work to gather all the available evidence so that we can understand how citizens came [to] be exposed with such a deadly substance that tragically cost Dawn her life,” the police said.
There is no evidence to suggest Ms Sturgess or the male victim had visited any of the sites decontaminated “following the attempted murders of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in March this year” in nearby Salisbury, they stressed.
Public Health England’s advice
Public Health England (PHE) said there is “no immediate health risk” for people who visited any of the five locations in Amesbury identified by police.
However, “as a highly precautionary measure”, it advised anyone who visited the locations between 10pm on June 29 and 6.30pm on June 20 to wash the clothes they were wearing, wipe personal items and keep them double-bagged and securely fastened.