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Guidance for hospitality businesses and licensed premises reopening

From 4 July, businesses like pubs and restaurants will begin to reopen, provided they meet the government’s criteria for keeping their staff and customers safe.

Adequate social distancing measures should be put in place to protect staff and customers wishing to purchase or collect food or drink from your premises.

Businesses are asked to be sensible in terms of their opening hours and licence holders should be mindful of the impact of opening at 12am.

The government has provided COVID-19 secure guidance for the hospitality sector and licensed premises and some of these measures include:

  • requiring use of table service where possible instead of ordering at the bar and assigning a single staff member per table

  • encouraging use of contactless ordering from tables where available, such as through an app

  • encouraging customers to use hand sanitiser or handwashing facilities as they enter the venue

Advice for licensed premises and providing takeaway alcohol

Particularly for licensed premises, if they wish to sell alcohol as part of a takeaway service or for consumption off the premises, they must ensure that their licence covers off sales as part of the licensable activity. They must also ensure robust age verification measures are put in place to prevent alcohol being provided to minors.

Seating cannot be made available (and this can include areas not under the control of the premises) and this is not restricted to seating within the premises such as beer gardens and adjoining smoking areas, but would include areas adjacent to the premises which also might include public benches.

Businesses that are NOT allowed to open yet

The following businesses and venues are not included in the government’s further easing of the lockdown and are still required by law to remain closed from 4 July:

  • bowling alleys and indoor skating rinks 
  • casinos 
  • exhibition or conference centres - where they are to be used for exhibitions or conferences 
  • indoor fitness and dance studios, and indoor gyms and sports venues/facilities 
  • indoor play areas including soft-play 
  • massage, tattoo and piercing parlours 
  • nail bars, beauty salons and tanning salons 
  • nightclubs 
  • spas 
  • swimming pools and water parks 

Council officers and the police will be checking that businesses and venues required to remain closed from 4 July are following the guidance. Businesses that do not follow restrictions may be subject to enforcement action. 

All businesses should familiarise themselves with the government guidance that applies to their industry.