JD Wetherspoon boss Tim Martin has accused the Government of creating a “stealth” lockdown. Through it’s new tier system being implemented across England.
Boss of Wetherspoon’s says new tier system is a “stealth” lockdown: Martin, the founder of the famous pub chain, said that over half of his portfolio of pubs would have to remain closed. After the lockdown ends on the 2nd December. Later, In a statement that he emailed to media Martin said. “The company has campaigned for pubs to revert to the rules agreed between the pub industry, civil servants, local authorities and health officials. Which were introduced when pubs reopened in July.
These rules greatly reduced pub capacity and provided strict social distancing and hygiene standards. But, with difficultly, allowed pubs to trade viably. It is very disappointing that yet another raft of regulations has been introduced. Which has effectively closed half our pubs. In reality, the government has extended a form of lockdown, by stealth, in large swathes of the country.”
The Government confirmed yesterday (Thursday) the tiers for each area of the country. With most being placed in tier 2 or 3 meaning the harshest restrictions will be applied.
Consequentially, Tier 2 means that pubs will only be allowed to serve alcohol with a substantial meal. Whilst tier 3 pubs will only be allowed to serve takeaway drinks that have been pre-ordered. Martin condemned this approach, saying that 366 pubs out of a total of 873 of his pubs are in tier 3. And would remain closed as it is too difficult to implement the restrictions.
Earlier, UK Hospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said that the restrictions are a “huge blow” to the hospitality trade. And warned it could cost the industry £7 billion in losses. Martin, who has always been a harsh critic of the way the Government have handled the virus, went on to say. “There has been no evidence of widespread transmission of the Coronavirus in pubs. As the Test and Trace system has evidenced.
Also, The data we have shows that the infection rate has risen, mainly due to social interactions. Particularly private household gatherings. In shops and hospitality venues there are strict measures in place to ensure they are COVID-safe. Whereas it is much easier to inadvertently pass on the virus in someone’s house, where people are more relaxed and less vigilant.”
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