Pub bosses mull future of masks

By Emily Hawkins contact

- Last updated on GMT

Lockdown easing: pub companies are waiting on updated Government guidance before deciding whether to encourage staff to continue wearing masks (image: Getty/LeoPatrizi)
Lockdown easing: pub companies are waiting on updated Government guidance before deciding whether to encourage staff to continue wearing masks (image: Getty/LeoPatrizi)

Related tags: England, City pub, Greene king, Punch, Nhs, Coronavirus, lockdown

Pub bosses are considering whether or not to ask or require staff to wear face coverings beyond 19 July as 38% say they will ask staff to continue.

More than one third of voters (38%) said they would ask staff to continue wearing face coverings, in a poll on The Morning Advertiser (MA)​ website.

Just under half of the 256 respondents (45%) said they would not ask staff to cover their faces while on shift while 17% said they were unsure.

Updated Government guidance for businesses is expected to be published on Monday 12 July, alongside a confirmation that the final lockdown easing step will be able to progress.

Guidance for individuals is expected to encourage the wearing of face coverings in crowded indoor spaces such as on public transport but it remains to be seen if anything will be recommended for hospitality staff.

Encouraged or instructed

City Pub Group’s Clive Watson told the BBC's Today​ programme the group would encourage or require staff to wear masks.

He said: “Staff should be encouraged or instructed to wear masks, that's very important, and I also think from a customer's point of view we will still try to offer as much service as possible at the table.”

Greene King and Punch Pubs & Co are among the pub companies waiting to see the guidance for employers before deciding on the future of masks.

Considering adaptions 

A Greene King spokesperson said: “We’re really looking forward to the move to step four and are working through how our pubs will adapt to the reduction of restrictions so we can recreate the great British pub atmosphere while still providing an environment where our customers and team feel safe.”

JD Wetherspoon said the issue was being discussed with the pub managers in coming days and no decision had been made yet.

Inception Group co-founder Charlie Gilkes told The MA staff would be able to wear a mask should they choose to.​ 

Related topics: Health & safety

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