“No Standing Room At The Bar” At Least For A While Says Gove

The opening up pubs, restaurants and bars after the coronavirus lockdown will be difficult and so there will be no standing at the bar in pubs for a long time, Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove said this week.

As England begins to ease the coronavirus lockdown, and the Government issues plans for the re-opening of retail business, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove was asked when pubs were likely to reopen.

“It’s going to be more difficult with pubs, restaurants and bars in full,” Gove told LBC Radio. “What I hope we may be able to see is people being able to have outdoor hospitality, so that you can enjoy a drink in the garden of a pub or eat outdoors in a cafe.”

“I think it’s going to be very very difficult for us to return to any of us standing at the bar or any of us mingling in a cafe indoors in a way that we have in the past,” he said.

As for the UK economy and people’s wellbeing, he said it would be “helpful to get people back to work, leading purposeful lives” and that it was “human nature” that people would be keen to do so, saying: “I think all of us would rather be at work than not.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced this week that outdoor markets and spacious car showrooms can open from June 1, as the government stated that, as with garden centres, the risk of catching COVID-19 is lower outside where it is generally easier to apply social distancing, and from 15 June, all other non-essential retailers, including shops selling clothes and indoor markets, can follow suit.

The government says it has issued guidance for people who “work in or run shops, branches, stores or similar environments”.