Perspex screens and no seats at the bar - how pubs will look after lockdown

22 May 2020, 17:37

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Pubs up and down the country have been installing measures to protect drinkers and staff as they prepare to reopen as lockdown measures ease.

Perspex screens and customers being banned from sitting at the bar are just some of the measures pub owners are taking ahead of potentially re-opening.

With the prospect of some hospitality businesses being able to re-open in July, pub owners have revealed some of the measures to ensure their businesses stick to social-distancing regulations.

Earlier this month, Boris Johnson said that some hospitality firms could be able to reopen from July 4 at the earliest in the Government's third phase of the lockdown.

Pubs, restaurants and hotels have remained closed since shutting their doors in March, with vast numbers of staff supported by the Government's furlough scheme.

READ MORE: Wetherspoons announces plans to reopen

John Rodgers, the owner of The Crown Inn in Wythenshawe, told LBC News he has turned his pub into a lockdown off-license.

"We've got all our tradition products which we were selling before, but we've increased the line to draw people in that wouldn't normally come into the pub," John said.

This follows a Government announcement that some pubs and bars would be able to re-open earlier if they served products for consumption off the premises.

The Crown Inn has introduced a one-way system in their bar, with only one customer allowed in at a time.

The main lounge of the pub has been set up as a shop, with an extensive range of craft beers and traditional ales.

John said the pub has increased its wine selection, and are also selling food.

He told our reporter the support from the community has been "really positive" with people coming in to help support local businesses.

The pub owner told LBC News he "just want to re-open my pub."

He said pub owners should look ahead to July 4 and "start planning."

The pub industry guidance suggests that "restrictions on customers remaining at the bar after ordering and getting their drink" should be considered.

It also proposed that customers are "discouraged" from returning empty glasses, customers are told to keep a safe distance away from bar staff and they will have to form a socially-distanced queue for orders.

One pub has installed perspex screens to protect staff and customers
One pub has installed perspex screens to protect staff and customers. Picture: LBC News

Daniel Scott, the owner of the Hearsall pub in Coventry has even gone as far as installing a perspex screen covering the entire bar area to protect staff and customers when they reopen.

He said one of his staff had used their "carpentry skills" to ensure the bar area is in a bubble of plastic.

Daniel told LBC News he plans to make better use of the outdoor space, with the car park and yard being devoted to drinkers.

Hospitality industry trade group UKHospitality (UKH) shared draft coronavirus guidelines for businesses ahead of any potential re-opening.

The plans suggest limiting the number of children allowed in play areas, having staff patrol smoking areas and asking customers not to return glasses to the bar.

Additional reporting by Jess Reeves