The company’s 1,700 estate of managed pubs will follow the ‘Pub Safe’ pledges, designed to help look after team members and ensure customers can socialise safely.
The promises focus on hygiene and safety, while aiming to maintain the atmosphere of the pub. They are:
- Safe socialising layout throughout the pubs
- Looking after the team so they can look after customers
- Minimising contact
- Hand sanitising and hygiene
- Pub Safe monitor
The layout will include clear signage to direct customers through the pub with tables spaced out further, in line with Government guidelines and customers will be encouraged to pre-book a table instead of standing at the bar.
The bar service area will have Perspex screens and screening will be positioned between booths, where necessary.
Entrances to toilets will have one-in-one-out red and green indicators so customers can flip the indicators with their elbow as they enter and exit, with toilets cleaned every 15 minutes.
Greene King stated it had invested £15m in measures for a phased reopening including protective measures for teams and customers, such as personal protective equipment for staff.
Staff are undergoing training ahead of reopening and will be temperature checked ahead of every shift. The pubco is also investing in additional staff in a bid to keep hygiene standards high.
It is also rolling out its order and pay app, ahead of schedule to all its managed pubs where customers will be encouraged to download it and place orders from the table, paying contactless via the app.
Menus will be single use that customers can take away or dispose of sustainably, cutlery will be wrapped and condiments in sachets or in fresh ramekins.
Each pub will have a host to greet customers, show them to their table and manage queues. Customers will also be asked to use hand sanitiser from stations upon arrival and utilise these stations placed in key positions during their visit.
Every site will have a ‘Pub Safe monitor’ – a team member, easily identifiable from their uniform, that will ensure additional cleaning of tables and public space is done quickly and efficiently. This monitor will also be customers’ and team members’ point of contact should they want to raise a concern.
Greene King chief executive officer Nick Mackenzie said: “We can’t wait to welcome our customers back to our pubs and we know people are eager to return to their local.
“The safety of our customers and team members is always our number one priority and against the backdrop of a slow recovery from Covid-19, we are investing to put in place all the necessary arrangements. Of course, customers will notice some differences when they return but it’s important that alongside implementing the changes, we maintain the very essence of the great British pub.”
“Many pubs across the country, including a number of our own, will not be financially viable or able to open for operational reasons with the current restrictions in place and we hope that, for the future of our industry, these measures will be short-lived.
“We are working towards a phased reopening and are planning to open as many as we can. However, the future of our industry is reliant on continued support from Government and reducing social distancing from two metres to one would make it possible for many more pubs across the country to be viable.”