NHS workers, police and delivery drivers are some of those who are putting themselves at risk every day and will have family members at home who are more susceptible to infection.
Ben Boothman, licensee of the Flying Horse Hotel, in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, said: “We need delivery drivers, we need police, we need these people and, despite everything that is going on, they still have to keep going out.”
Family in danger
“But, they might have someone at home who is at high risk with chest problems, asthma, or is elderly, and would then be putting that person in danger.
“So, I’m offering this as somewhere for them to stay.”
Boothman explained the idea came after he got into a conversation with his sister over who was going to look after their mother who was in a ‘high-risk’ group.
He said with his sister working for the NHS, and him running pubs, it would be dangerous to look after her with both having occupations that come into contact with the general population every day.
“So we thought to ourselves, there must be families out there who has also got somebody at home who can’t come into contact with people,” Boothman added.
Free use of facilities
He said: “It’s obviously not for people who are at high risk of contracting the virus – because that would be silly, living in a hotel – and it is certainly not for anyone who’s got it.
“But it’s for people who have to work through this all and can’t risk bringing anything back to someone who is at home who is in a high-risk category.”
Boothman explained such key workers are free to use their washing rooms, the staff kitchen and are free to live there with no charge until “this all blows over”.
“These rooms are going to be empty for as long as this goes on, so why not do it?
“It's nice to be nice and they were glad that someone had actually thought of it because we are in a unique predicament.”