/Pubs stay shut as vast majority of people to shun reopening over virus fears

Pubs stay shut as vast majority of people to shun reopening over virus fears

Super Saturday could be a damp squib for those hoping to see buzzing bars again, with publicans and the public appearing to shun it over coronavirus fears.

Just one in three pubs, bars and restaurants in Newcastle city centre will reopen for business on Saturday, a council spokesman said.

Some 93% of Brits said they planned to avoid bars this weekend when asked by survey site Findoutnow.co.uk.

Even when it only included people who were regular drinkers before lockdown kicked in, it discovered eight out of nine were still planning to stay home.

Mark Hall, from health and safety company  Protecting.co.uk, said: “I think people are feeling a bit anxious about going to places that are likely to be busy, such as going down the local for a few drink.”

He added: “I just don’t feel it’s safe yet.”

New tules are designed to keep people safe
(Image: Getty Images)

A lot of pubs agree, too.

Bosses of the popular Tyne Bar in Newcastle said it will not be opening.

“After much careful consideration, we have decided not to rush into reopening on July 4,” the bar said on Twitter.

“We are genuinely concerned that this could be a day of total chaos for the pub trade and, like our mates at @thecluny and @kilnouseburn, we’ve decided it’s not worth the risk.”

Newcastle council said only 30% of licensees in the city centre have stated they will definitely welcome patrons once again on Saturday.

It’s not the only place where people are keeping their doors closed either.

Beer is being shipped in anticipation of a big night
(Image: Andrew Fosker/REX/Shutterstock)
Wetherspoons is ready to throw open its doors on Saturday too
(Image: PA)

Popular central London bar Bierschenke will also be waiting a while yet.

“After deep consideration of many aspects, we feel it is not the right time to re-open on the 4th of July,” it said in a message to customers.

“While our huge beer halls and Bavarian benches certainly do not lack space, we would rather patiently wait for the right time to open our doors.”

Others said they would be opening up, just later on in the month.

The Great Southern in South London is aiming for Thursday.

“We want to guarantee that we can deliver the quality food and service that you expect, whilst maintaining the safety and security of both you and our team,” the pub said.

Concerns over the new safety measures are also holding people back.

“People are concerned that it’s too soon to be rushing out to the pub, and that the changes they’ve had to make for safety will make popping down the local for a pint feel too clinical,” Hall said.

“Plus, how can the staff enforce social distancing after people have had a few drinks?”

Members of the public agreed when asked by Protecting.co.uk.

Vanessa commented: “Frankly, I’m not keen on handing over my contact details at the door, even if it’s for contact tracing. What else are they going to do with it?”

Patrick added: “Feasibly I could do it, but is it really worth all the extra hassle and faff of temperature checks and checking in?”

Original Source