Despite the second stage of lockdown 3 easing on 12th April, over half of Newbury town centre’s cafes, restaurants, and pubs, were forced to remain closed, as they lack the outdoor space to operate pavement cafes or beer gardens. For this reason, Monday 17th May couldn’t come soon enough for the final 39 of Newbury’s hospitality venues waiting to open. You can find all the reopening dates for town centre hospitality venues here.
This next phase also enables hospitality venues currently operating an outdoor service to resume their indoor services, something we’re sure will be warmly welcomed after many venues closed voluntarily as a result of the temperamental weather recently. Customers can rest assured that they no longer need to rush out to secure an al-fresco dining spot– albeit under ‘April springs’ opposed to ‘spring sunshine’ of late. It is worth noting that the most recent government announcement also confirmed that groups of 30 people can now meet to mix outdoors, be it in a private garden or a public place.
As part of Step 3, many of the same rules have carried over from Step 2, with a couple of additional guidelines in force. As before, all establishments must comply with Test & Trace requirements, and the rule that all guests aged 16 or over need to supply their contact details– either by scanning the venue’s QR code with the NHS app or by using the venue’s alternative method– still applies. Venues must only serve groups of up to six people or two households, indoors, as the social distancing guidelines of maintaining 2 meters distance or 1 metre plus other mitigating factors remain.
Venues with an alcohol licence must operate as table service only, and face coverings are mandatory at all times, apart from when seated at a table inside the venue. Masks or visors must be worn by guests when entering the premises, visiting the toilets, baby changing facilities, or breastfeeding rooms. Those who do not comply with the rules must be refused entry by the venue.
Failure to comply with the guidelines may result in catastrophic consequences such as permanent closures of licensed premises.
Alison Drummond, our Operations Manager, explains,