Brewers warn of permanent closure unless Government set date for pubs to re-open

Non-essential shops have reopened but pubs say they are at 'crisis point'. Credit: ITV News Central
  • This report from Andy Bevan begins with some flash photography.

Brewers and landlords are warning that unless the Government sets a date for pubs to re-open, thousands could face permanent closure.

The prime minister is expected to make an announcement tomorrow, but the pub industry says it also needs clear guidance on how it can operate safely.

Coronavirus lockdown forced all pubs to close their doors on March 20, and now brewers and pub operators have sent a letter to the PM looking for clarity as to when they can re-open.

Marston's at Burton-upon-Trent in Staffordshire hopes to be operating again next month.

Ralph Findlay, Chief Exec, Marston's said: "It's going to be critical for us and the pub industry and the restaurant industry to have a summer trading. If we don't get open by the summer, there are going to be a lot of people who are experiencing serious financial difficulty."

Ralph Findlay, Chief Exec, Marston's says people will face financial difficulty if they do not open soon. Credit: ITV News Central
Pub owner Amar Uppal says he has made changes internally to his pub. Credit: ITV News Central

Elsewhere, The Fuzzy Duck at Nuneaton in Warwickshire says they too are hoping for a relaxation in the 2-metre rule.

Amar Uppal, Pub owner said: "We've done all the changes internally, we're in the process of putting out signage and the reason that's not been completed is because of the controversy over the 2 metres versus 1 metre, which hopefully will get relaxed.

"We've got both options ready and we're ready to go as soon as the guidance is announced."

The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) said pub and brewery businesses are burning through £100 million every month in cash whilst they remain closed.

Emma McClarkin, chief executive of the BBPA, said: “Britain’s 47,000 pubs and 2,000 brewers have reached a critical moment and need a definitive date on when pubs can reopen."

Read more on: