Pubs without beer gardens can still reopen on April 12 with lockdown loophole

Pubs without a beer garden will still be able to open on April 12 in a lockdown loophole, it has been reported.

Brits desperate for a pint will still be able to enjoy drinks at a variety of venues because they can be served in any outdoor area such as a carpark.

Pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes will be able to use any outdoor space available to them as a makeshift drinking and dining area in the next step of coronavirus lockdown restrictions easing.

There will be no need for customers to order a substantial meal with alcoholic drinks, but punters must order, eat and drink while seated.

When the policy was first announced, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said: "I know we all look forward to seeing our pubs, cafes and restaurants open their doors again and I'm determined to give them a helping hand to get back on their feet and their staff back to work safely.

"That's why we are introducing changes to make it quicker, easier and cheaper for them to set up outdoor seating and street stalls to serve food and drink."

Venues without outdoor areas can serve takeaway pints until they can fully reopen, with indoor service set to resume from May 17 at the earliest.

Boozers have been shut since the turn of the year and it had been feared that only a small percentage will be able to reopen on April 12 because many do not have beer gardens or patios for outdoor service.

The reopening of the hospitality industry is being fast-tracked as part of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's four-step plan out of lockdown.

  • Devastated family of woman, 21, killed on farm in 'tragic accident' pay tribute

It is a major boost to an industry which has suffered more than most since the first coronavirus lockdown began a little more than a year ago.

Kids returned to the classrooms on March 8 while the "stay home" messages was scrapped a few weeks later as outdoor gatherings of up to six people or two households were permitted from March 29.

The government hopes the country will exit lockdown for good on June 21.

  • Boris Johnson's near-death brush with Covid one year on from PM being rushed to hospital

From April 12, every pub punter must check-in with the NHS Covid app to get a pint.

Previously when hospitality reopened in 2020, only the lead member of the group needed to provide contact details.

Now customers will be told to book a test immediately if they sit near a drinker who is Covid-positive, regardless of whether they have symptoms or not.

Hospitality chiefs called the move to allow takeaway pints a "lifeline" for many businesses.

Kate Nicholls, UKHospitality chief executive, said: "This is great news for pubs. Businesses are going to be severely restricted, most likely trading at a loss, until the restrictions are lifted in June.

"Allowing takeaway alcohol will be a vital lifeline for many and could be the difference between survival and failure.

"Almost 60 per cent of pubs have no outdoor space so they won't be able to open in April. Takeaway is going to be their only source of income until May."

Source: Read Full Article