Almost two thirds of Brits not scaling back pub plans due to Delta variant

By Stuart Stone contact

- Last updated on GMT

Varying behaviour? Some 60% of respondents have not scaled back plans to visit pubs and bars due to rise of Covid-19’s Delta variant (Image: Getty Images/ ViewApart)
Varying behaviour? Some 60% of respondents have not scaled back plans to visit pubs and bars due to rise of Covid-19’s Delta variant (Image: Getty Images/ ViewApart)

Related tags: Health and safety, Coronavirus, Sales, Legislation, Drinking, Pubs

Some 60% of respondents have not scaled back plans to socialise in pubs and bars due to the increasing number of Covid-19 cases, according to new research.

A survey of close to 1,000 Brits by global intelligence platform Streetbees found that those aged between 40-44 and 25-34 were the least likely to change plans to go out due to the rising number of Covid cases – with 69% and 66% respectively claiming their socialising in pubs and bars would be unaffected. 

These figures come as Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a four-week delay to the earmarked 21 June “Freedom Day” in England, with data showing that the Delta variant originating in India is now the dominant strain of the virus. 

What’s more, those in the 35-39 (59%), 18-24 (56%) and 65+ (55%) age brackets were similarly committed to fulfilling pub plans, while only the 45-54 (48%) and 55-64 (44%) groups saw fewer than half of respondents claim their social calls would continue as usual.  

As per current restrictions, pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants are allowed to serve customers indoors in groups of up to six, or two households of any size. Groups seated outside may have up to 30 people.

Prior to the Prime Minister’s announcement, some 45% of those quizzed by Streetbees said they were planning to visit a pub on 21 June to mark the lifting of restrictions – including 55% of respondents aged over 65 and 57% of the 18-24 age bracket.

Long-term effects

Streetbees’ research also found that only a quarter (27%) of Brits planned to scale back their pub and bar visits for good as a result of the pandemic, with 46% thirsting for on-trade outings to return to normal and a further 27% unsure of whether they’d make any long-term changes. 

However, on top of this, some 47% of respondents claimed that they intend to continue Covid-secure practices such as social distancing and wearing face masks indoors even once restrictions are lifted with a further 22% continuing to do so until everyone is vaccinated.

‘England will follow where the northwest has led’ 

Latest data provided on 14 June 2021 revealed a daily increase of 7,742 positive Covid tests, three deaths, and 187 patients admitted to hospital – taking the number of admissions past 1,000 over the past seven days.  

According to the Government’s chief medical adviser, Chris Whitty in the northwest there has been a 64% increase in cases since last week. “England will follow where the northwest has led,” he warned. 

“There has been a 61% increase in hospitalisations, since last week in the northwest, and a 50% increase across the country as a whole, but we expect that will probably accelerate,” he continued.

“These case numbers are still relatively small, and if we’re doubling from 50 to 100 or 100 to 200, the numbers are still relatively modest compared to the capacity of the NHS, but double relatively small numbers several times and you start getting to really quite large numbers. Things can take off, very rapidly.” 

However, at the time of writing, 79.2% of the adult population – some 41,698,429 – had received a first dose of a Covid vaccine, while 56.9% had received their second injection – some 29,973,779.

Related topics: Health & safety

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