Coronavirus testing urged after outbreak at Staffordshire pub

29 July 2020, 17:42

The Crown and Anchor pub in Stone
The Crown and Anchor pub in Stone. Picture: Google

By Ewan Somerville

People have been urged to take coronavirus tests after ten cases were linked to a Staffordshire pub.

The ten Covid-19 cases have been confirmed at the Crown and Anchor in Stone. 

It comes after dozens of drinkers packed out the pub’s beer garden “like sardines”, forcing the pub to shut due to the “overwhelming” surge in visitors. 

Now officials and police are urging anyone who drank in the pub between 16-18 July to get tested. 

Ayrron Robinson, who lives opposite the pub, captured scores of drinkers in the beer garden on 18 July and said it had been “really busy” since it reopened earlier this month. 

"Last Saturday, I'd say there were 100 to 200 people there. They were like sardines. It's basically gone back to how it was before lockdown,” he told the Stoke Sentinel. 

READ MORE: Coronavirus 'cluster' investigated after 14 new cases identified

It prompted the Crown and Anchor to confirm it would be closing to "review our risk assessment in order to deal with the difficulty that we faced with social distancing”.

Dr Richard Harling, director of public health at the council, said "not very much" is known about the nature of the gathering. 

But he said "it does appear that one of the people who caught the infection at the Crown and Anchor was then at a private event where there was further transmission of the infection".

Dr Richard Harling, director of public health at the council, said"not very much" is known about the nature of the gathering. 

“People who caught [the virus] at the pub could still be infectious," Dr Harling added. 

READ MORE: Drinkers urged to self-isolate after coronavirus outbreak at pub

"We're not just talking about people who were at the pub, we're talking about people who were in contact with other people who were at the pub and we'd like them to come forward and get tested."

After scenes of overcrowding at the pub were posted online, local MP Sir Bill Cash said: "It shows a degree of lack of concern for other people and it just is completely unacceptable and inappropriate for people to gather in such circumstances."

A walk-in test centre is open on the Crown Street car park in Stone on Wednesday and Friday from 10:00-17:00.On Wednesday, the council said it had a "high volume of visitors".

LBC News has approached the Crown and Anchor for comment.

Several pubs across England have reported outbreaks since they reopened. Another pub in the town, The Swan, said in a statement on Facebook on Wednesday that it would stay closed in light of the Covid-19 cases within the area.