'People are falsely claiming business lunches to book restaurant tables'

27 November 2020, 14:18 | Updated: 27 November 2020, 16:47

By Sam Sholli

Illustrious chef Alexis Gauthier has told James O'Brien that people are falsely claiming to have business lunches to avoid falling foul of Tier 2 rules.

Mr Gauthier, who has before been awarded a Michelin star, said people were exploiting the loophole to dine at restaurants with people outside their households.

Under Tier 2, a business meeting will be the only permitted way for one to meet anyone outside of their household in an indoor hospitality setting.

The rules state that otherwise Londoners "must not socialise with anyone you do not live with or who is not in your support bubble in any indoor setting, whether at home or in a public place".

However, Mr Gauthier, who is the chef patron of the Gauthier Soho restaurant, told James: "A lot of people use the slight loophole of a business meeting to start booking tables for next week onwards."

He added: "Listen, I'd love to be able to believe that people have all good intentions and when they are told that Tier 2 is Tier 2 they're actually careful.

"But that's not the case sadly and I don't believe that the Government took this decision not knowing that people are actually going to use this loophole that is going to put my employees at risk."

He also said: "I don't believe this flaw hasn't been put there purposely."