‘Pragmatic’ sector reopening guidance provides flexibility, says UKHospitality


Guidance for the safe reopening of pubs, bars and restaurants has been warmly welcomed by trade body UKHospitality, providing businesses with the flexibility to ensure that reopening is safe and effective.

UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “It is reassuring that the government has understood the need for flexibility, demonstrating that they have listened to businesses. The guidance is pragmatic and should a provide venues with enough versatility to suit their own unique circumstances. This is exactly what was needed to avoid restricting venues and making the job of reopening even harder.

“The emphasis is now going to be on businesses and customers to exercise some responsibility and ensuring that the guidance works optimally. Venues are acutely aware of the need to build up trust and consumer confidence, and make customers feel safe in their venues. Looking after our guests is the hospitality sector’s modus operandi, so we have plenty of experience in taking care of customers and I am confident we can rise to this challenge.

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“We have been working closely with the Government to ensure that guidance is workable and effective in mitigating risks. This will mean that more businesses stay alive and as many jobs as possible kept secure.”

The 43-page document (available to download at the foot of this article) with specific information for pubs, restaurants and takeaway services details new protocols that operators should embrace to ensure their premises are safe for staff and customers.  

It addresses risk management, social distancing, cleaning, PPE and workforce management, as well as advice on kitchens and food preparation areas.

For those businesses not already using a booking system to record their customer’s details, the Government will work with industry and relevant bodies to design a system in line with data protection legislation, and will set out details regarding this shortly.

The guidance goes on to advise that indoor table service must be used ‘where possible’, alongside further measures such as assigning a single staff member per table. 

Contactless ordering is also encouraged. 

Other key requirements that operators need to bear in mind include:

– Minimising interaction between kitchen staff and other workers, including when on breaks.

– Putting teams into shifts to restrict the number of workers interacting with each other.

– Using ‘one way’ traffic flows to minimise contact.

– Spacing working areas to maintain social distancing guidelines (2m, or 1m with risk mitigation where 2m is not viable, is acceptable) as much as possible.

– Visitor Economy Guidance here.

– Hotel and Other Guest Accommodation Guidance here.

– Pubs and Restaurants Guidance here (from BEIS).

Tags : coronavirushotelsKate NichollsreopeningtourismtravelUKHospitality
Zoe Monk

The author Zoe Monk

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