The Surrey-based beermaker, which has been brewing since 1992 and supplies pubs from Stonegate, Mitchells & Butlers and JD Wetherspoon, has offered its Hop Hangar as a drive-through vaccination facility.
The brewer has proposed to open large doors at either end of its hangar in Tongham, Surrey, for vaccine recipients to drive through with medical staff and chilled vaccines to be housed in its adjacent tap room bar.
The maker of Traditional English Ale and Hazy Hog cider’s offer is currently being assessed by the Local Resilience Forum, the alliance of councils, police, NHS and other strategic partners co-ordinating the response to the Covid-19 pandemic in Hogs Back's Surrey and Hampshire heartland.
Hogs Back’s proposal follows similar offers from independent craft brewer BrewDog, café bar operator Loungers and Oakman Inns – which has offered to forego £250,000 in grants in exchange for using its sites as vaccination centres.
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Working to meet requirements
As reported by the BBC, the Government is aiming to vaccinate in the region of 15m people over-70, employed as healthcare workers and required to shield by mid-February.
What’s more, health secretary Matt Hancock recently revealed 2m people in the UK have already been vaccinated, with an estimated 200,000 jabs administered in England per day.
The BBC also reported there will be approximately 1,200 vaccination sites when more GP-led and hospital services open in the coming days.
"We're offering the Hop Hangar as our contribution to the vaccination roll-out, and we'll work with the Local Resilience Forum to ensure we can meet its requirements,” Rupert Thompson, managing director of Hogs Back Brewery said.
"Our brewery is in a location well served by main roads, and we believe it would be very effective as a drive through facility. People might not even need to get out of their cars to be injected, although that's for the organisers to decide, and it can all be done under cover. We have fridges for the vaccines, and rooms for the medical and support staff.
"We can even offer those who've been vaccinated a cup of tea afterwards, and for the staff manning the site, we'll also provide a free bottle of our very own TEA – our flagship Traditional English Ale – for them to enjoy once they're off duty.
"As far as we know, we're the first brewer to offer a vaccination space. With the whole of the UK now getting behind the programme, we're keen to play our part and support our friends and neighbours."