85% of Brits feel pubs are meeting or exceeding Covid-secure guidance expectations

By Stuart Stone

- Last updated on GMT

Pub compliance: despite widely publicised reports to the contrary, the vast majority (85%) of pubgoers believe their local is sticking to covid-secure guidance
Pub compliance: despite widely publicised reports to the contrary, the vast majority (85%) of pubgoers believe their local is sticking to covid-secure guidance

Related tags Health and safety Coronavirus Legislation Hygiene + cleaning Training

The vast majority of customers who’ve visited post-lockdown pubs have found operators to be compliant with guidance to stop the spread of Covid-19.

According to global intelligence platform Streetbees, more than eight-in-ten (85%) of pubgoers believe their local has followed Covid-19 secure Government guidance, such as maintaining social distancing, collecting customer contact details and providing hand sanitiser where possible. 

Research found 13% of respondents believed pubs and bars they’d visited since the easing of lockdown restrictions had adapted to guidance “very well” while a further 31% believed their local had done “well” in adapting their business for the new normal.

What’s more, slightly less than half (41%) of those quizzed by Streetbees had seen operators simply meet expectations with regards to safety measures, while only 3% of respondents revealed that sites they’d visited had followed guidance “badly”.

The reveal of these figures comes after an undercover investigation by Sky News​ into several pubs in an unnamed suburb of Greater Manchester found that nine of the ten visited sites were not following guidance – with a number covertly filmed flouting measures designed to prevent the spread of Covid-19.  

Greater Manchester’s mayor, night-time economy advisor, brewers and pub operators have since collectively called​ on the public to step up and take their share of responsibility for controlling the spread of the virus. 

Customers taking guidance seriously

However, while Streetbees found that the vast majority of visitors to the on-trade since venues were allowed to reopen on 4 July​ have seen their expectations on Covid-secure guidance met, 82% of those quizzed also stated they would be put off visiting a pub if they thought it wasn’t following safety measures.

What’s more, three quarters (73%) believe venues should be shuttered if they’re found to be ignoring guidance – though 23% of those approving of enforced closures believe it should only apply in “extreme cases”.

This echoes calls by the Local Government Association​ for local authorities to be entrusted with extra power to shut pubs and other licensed premises they find are flying in the face of Covid-19 safety guidance.

In addition, the intelligence platform’s survey also found almost half (46%) of pubgoers have swotted up on Covid-secure guidance for operators and consider themselves to “know a lot” about them having kept a close eye on developments. 

In contrast only 4% said they didn't know anything about guidance for pubs and bars while 50% of respondents claim to “know a little”. 

However, despite these claims to knowledge, Streetbees found about one-in-five pubgoers have had to be reminded by a pub operator to follow guidance at some point since sites reopened – with 10% saying they’ve been reminded once, while 9% have had to be warned on multiple occasions. 

Local lockdown impact 

Streetbees' survey also revealed that pubs and bars would likely bear the brunt of dented consumer confidence in the event of a local outbreak or lockdown measures such as those seen across Greater Manchester​, West Yorkshire and east Lancashire.

While one-in-five (20%) of respondents said local measures would make them uncomfortable going to any venue, nearly three quarters (72%) said they would be put off going to pubs compared to 68% who would feel discouraged from hitting a bar. 

What’s more, 59% of respondents told Streetbees that they would be put off going to a restaurant in the event that local measures were put in place as a result of a Covid-19 cluster such as those seen in Leicester​ and Aberdeen​.

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