UK Pubs Urge Timeline To Reopen From Lockdown




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front page of Evening Standard newspaper leads with story the government is contemplating making it compulsory all visitors the will have quarantine in a hotel, after arriving here, outside Victoria train station in central London January 25, 2021. (Photo by Hollie Adams / AFP).

Britain’s shuttered pubs urgently government decide when they can reopen from coronavirus lockdown help them survive, British Beer and Pub Association said Wednesday.

Pub beer sales slumped by 56 percent or £7.8 billion ($10.8 billion, 8.9 billion euros) last year deadly -19 , which sparked a series of lockdowns, the industry body added in a statement.

“This is not sustainable for our sector. We cannot continue to hold out under these circumstances,” noted BBPA Philip Whitehead.

“We urge the government to provide clarity to our sector on when it can expect to fully reopen.”

Much of the re-entered lockdown in early January to curb a variant -19 strain was deemed more transmissible, with restrictions similar to initial curbs imposed in the second quarter of 2020 — when pub beer sales collapsed to almost zero.

However, British Boris Johnson plans to outline plans for lifting widespread restrictions in England on February 22, as vaccinations gather pace.

The BBPA, which represents 20,000 drinking establishments across the , also published its own “recovery roadmap” on Tuesday which it said should be implemented after the vulnerable have been vaccinated.

“The roadmap states post vaccination of the most vulnerable, pubs must reopen when non-essential retail and other parts of the hospitality sector reopen,” it said.

“It also says that mandatory trading restrictions — such as alcoholic drinks served only with a substantial meal, no mixed households and the 10 pm (2200 GMT) curfew — must be removed when pubs reopen in a timely way.”

Sales had collapsed in 2020 from the previous year, despite a third-quarter boost from lower taxation and the government’s temporary “Eat Out to Help Out” discount scheme.

“As a sector we have invested hundreds of millions in ensuring that we provide places for people to safely socialise in,” added Whitehead.

“When pubs reopened in July we did so safely and successfully to world leading standards.

“When pubs can reopen, the restrictions they face… must be removed. They simply destroy the ability to operate as viable .”

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