/Prince William raises a glass to Super Saturday with pubs set to reopen

Prince William raises a glass to Super Saturday with pubs set to reopen

Prince William raised a glass to give Super Saturday the royal seal of approval.

He said it is “an important day” as lockdown-weary people get to hit bars and restaurants again.

Experts estimate £4billion will be splurged in the first week of the hospitality sector rebooting.

And with 80% of pubs in England preparing welcome back regulars on Saturday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson praised the public’s patience in battling coronavirus.

But he also urged us to “enjoy summer safely” and not “blow it”, sending us back into lockdown.

The Duke of Cambridge, 38, showed his support by dropping in to see preparations at the Rose and Crown in Snettisham, Norfolk.

The Duke of Cambridge takes a sip of an Aspalls cider at The Rose and Crown pub in Snettisham
(Image: PA)
The Prince popped into The Rose and Crown pub in Snettisham, Norfolk
(Image: PA)

The pub, one of 40,000 set to reopen at the first opportunity, is five miles from his Anmer Hall pad at Sandringham.

He enjoyed an Aspall Suffolk Draught Cyder while chatting to owners Anthony and Jeanettte Goodrich about the challenges since pubs were shuttered more than three months ago.

The couple told how they had to furlough 20 full-time staff and 11 part-timers.

Asking about their expectations for the weekend, the Duke said: “It could end up with everyone at the pub, because people just want a change of scene, being at home for so long.

“Are you worried about people getting a bit out of hand?”

And Mr Goodrich, 65, said: “We are a bit but we are ready for it.”

Pubs across the country are preparing to reopen
(Image: Adam Gerrard / Daily Mirror)

After the Prince’s visit, he said: “William was interested in how we have dealt with lockdown, the procedures for reopening and how we felt about it.

“He said Saturday was an important day.”

But there were words of caution as the PM urged people to stick to rules.

He said: “We’re making progress, we think we’re in good shape but my message is let’s not blow it.”

The Duke of Cambridge raises a glass at a pub in Snettisham, Norfolk
(Image: PA)

And at Friday’s press conference in Downing Street, chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance told of the danger of “superspreading” Covid-19 in pubs.

And chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty added: “None of us believe this is a risk-free next step.

“We have to have a clear approach to maintain social distancing while enjoying pubs.”

Pub-goers have booked tables, downloaded ordering apps and filled in track and trace forms. The Little Prince in Margate, Kent – believed to be Britain’s smallest pub at 10ft by 6ft 6in – will offer a hatch service from noon.

The Duke of Cambridge talks to workers at The Rose and Crown pub in Snettisham
(Image: PA)

Tracy Breen, who runs the bar, said: “We are excited, just hesitant because of all the rules.”

But drinkers across the land may find prices hard to swallow after it emerged they have risen an average 6% since last year.

The average pint of beer is now £3.94 – up from £3.70.

Outside London, where the price is £5.19, Brighton has the dearest at £5.02. Sunderland is cheapest at £3.30.

In restaurants, diners will book in two or three-hour slots.

Supermarket cafes are also back in business with Morrisons reopening 320 and Marks & Spencer 118.

Industry body UKHospitality says 36% of venues will be ready to serve diners on the first day.

Chief executive Kate Nicholls added: “This weekend marks the first step on the road back to normal.”

Hairdressers will be allowed to open up again
(Image: PA)
Chichester Cathedral in West Sussex is preparing to reopen
(Image: PA)

Meanwhile, those desperate for trims can get to a hairdresser – and with bookings full for months some were open from midnight.

Customers will wear a face mask while the stylist will also be in a mask and visor.

Churches, mosques, synagogues and temples will also open doors.

And cinemas will flicker into life with Odeon opening 10, including Manchester, Warrington, Durham, Birmingham, Norwich and Bournemouth.

Showcase is opening nine sites, including Leeds, Liverpool, Nottingham and Bluewater, Kent.

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