The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA), the leading trade body representing the UK’s brewers and pubs, has said that those pubs with beer gardens should be amongst the first to re-open after lockdown.
It says that pubs with beer gardens or outside terraces should be best placed to meet social distancing restrictions required for re-opening from 4 July, enabling people to enjoy their local community pub’s beer garden in the summer sun.
The trade association estimates that there are some 27,000 pubs across the UK with beer gardens – more than half of the UK’s 47,000 pubs in total.
The BBPA has previously welcomed the news that pubs could re-open as part of phase three of the Government’s roadmap which starts from 4th July at the earliest.
However, it has stated that more clarity is needed on the conditions pubs will need to re-open under in July and that Government must recognise that many pubs may not be able to meet the safety criteria and so be forced to stay closed beyond that date.
To help steer the reopening of Britain’s pubs, the trade association is to work in partnership with the Government through its pubs and restaurants taskforce. It will offer its expertise and insights to the taskforce, including through offering assistance with pilot schemes, to help ensure pubs re-open safely for staff and customers and under conditions that are operationally viable.
There has also been speculation that Government is considering introducing more flexibility for pubs, restaurants and bars to use other outside space including pavements and could also be given permission to sell food and drink from street stalls outside their premises in the coming weeks.
Emma McClarkin, BBPA's Chief Executive, said, “We want to explore all opportunities for our nations pubs to reopen safely and viably as soon as is possible. We are working with Government to consider all the possible options for re-opening pubs as soon as we can in a safe and viable way whilst meeting the required social distancing restrictions.
“The 27,000 pubs in the UK with beer gardens will be amongst the best placed to re-open under social distancing conditions and so should be amongst the first to reopen. This would let people enjoy their local community pub’s beer garden in the summer sun.”