Boris Johnson today declared that England’s pubs can open from 6am tomorrow – just hours after he pleaded with millions of drinkers to be ‘sensible’ on ‘Super Saturday’.
The Prime Minister said that he wanted people to use the loosening of lockdown in England from tomorrow to ‘enjoy summer’ – and has now ruled that alcohol can be served across the country from just after dawn.
Mr Johnson’s spokesman claimed this afternoon that the 6am opening times for pubs and bars was to avoid landlords opening a few hours earlier at 12.01am and holding all-night parties.
But as police brace for chaos and fears of a surge in coronavirus cases critics have said the 6am opening time gives ‘mixed messages’ about excessive drinking when most hostelries usually open at 11am or midday unless they serve breakfasts.
Officers are so worried that the Chief Constables of Devon & Cornwall Police and Dorset Police have said today that drinkers there will be limited to two hours in a pub – but have not said how it will be imposed.
The Prime Minister has said that he wanted people to use the loosening of lockdown in England from tomorrow to ‘enjoy summer’. But he insists that the success of the move is down to whether people act ‘responsibly’, urging the public not to ‘let down’ the sectors of the economy that desperately need to reopen safely.
Critics have called tomorrow ‘Stupid Saturday’ amid fears of heavy drinking, rowdy behaviour and most significantly concerns that there could be a spike in coronavirus cases – while mayhem on the roads are also predicted 10million drivers expected to clog the roads, especially those heading away on holiday after four months of lockdown.
With pubs opening at 6am tomorrow, it also emerged today
- Hair salons are preparing to open at midnight and work until morning to meet the frenzied demand from Britons aching for a post-lockdown trim;
- Churches can also reopen for services including weddings of no more than 30 people – but 75,000 couples have already postponed walking down the aisle over the past three months;
- Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is finally paving the way for summer holidays today by releasing a list of 60 quarantine-exempt countries – but fears have been raised that plans for mass screening for covid-19 at airports could cause ‘log jams’ in the terminals;
Speaking in a phone-in on LBC radio this morning, Boris Johnson said he wanted people to use the loosening of lockdown in England from tomorrow to ‘enjoy summer’ and decided pubs can open at 6am tomorrow
Beer is deliveed this morning at The Cricketers in Chelmsford, Essex, as England’s tens of thousands of pubs and bars can start serving again
Screens are being put up on the Atlas Bar and cafe in Manchester as the new era of going out for drinking and food begins tomorrow
Beer barrels arrive at the Windsor Castle pub in South Kensington, west London, ahead of pubs reopening tomorrow
Sylvester Kowalczk pictured measuring 2m to put social distancing stickers on the floor at the Ship and Whale pub in Rotherhithe, south London
Mr Johnson made the appeal in an LBC radio phone-in this morning as police chiefs urge the British public to use their common sense tomorrow.
The move to allow pubs to reopen from 6am tomorrow will disappoint some punters who had hoped for establishments to open from midnight tonight.
The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said today that the regulations ‘mostly come into force at 12.01am’ tomorrow.
They added: ‘The reopening of pubs and bars specifically comes into force at 6am. That would just be in the event anybody would attempt to try to open at midnight.’
A poll by ITVs Good Morning Britain (GMB) showed nearly 90 per cent of voters are dubbing tomorrow ‘Stupid Saturday’ instead of ‘Super Saturday’.
Social media users appear far from excited about pubs in England reopening, with many tweeting they will keep clear of boozers tomorrow.
While some want to stay away from the possible ‘carnage’, others are concerned about a potential rise in cases of Covid-19.
Mr Johnson said there was a need to proceed ‘carefully and cautiously’.
‘Tomorrow we come to step three of the plan that I set out on May 10, that everybody, I think, has understood, or huge numbers of people have understood and followed very carefully and very closely,’ he told LBC.
‘And it’s because people stuck to that plan that we’re now able to carefully and cautiously open up hospitality tomorrow. And my message is really for people to enjoy summer sensibly and make sure that it all works.’
The PM will use a Downing Street press conference today to warn that the Government could ‘put on the brakes’ and bring back severe restrictions if there is a surge in cases, as has been witnessed in Leicester.
The relaxation in England is set to be a key test of the progress made by imposing draconian restrictions on March 23 to halt the spread of Covid-19.
A poll by ITV’s Good Morning Britain (GMB) shows that nearly 90 per cent of voters are choosing to dub ‘Super Saturday’ as ‘Stupid Saturday instead’
A member of staff at The Althorp by Wandsworth Common wears PPE while serving customers
Social media users tweeted that they will be keeping clear of pubs in England tomorrow
Official pleas for calm tomorrow are being echoed by the public, as social media users tweet about keeping clear of pubs in England on ‘Super Saturday’.
‘In a pandemic, pubs have a new licence, a licence to contaminate, a licence to kill,’ one social media user tweeted this morning.
Another post read: ‘Why is the reopening of pubs tomorrow being called Super Saturday? Carnage Saturday seems more appropriate.’
One person commented: ‘Is anyone actually going to the pub tomorrow or are they are all doing the same thing and “wait until it dies down”?’
‘#StayHomeSaturday #ProtectNHS,’ one tweet read. ‘StopTheSpread. Drink at home, don’t risk spreading Covid-19 please.’
Another said ‘if I see anyone going to the pubs on reopening I will unfriend u on sight’, while one added: ‘The list time this country had a super Saturday, we were celebrating incredible sports people winning gold medals. Now they are using the phrase to celebrate pubs reopening and people most probably getting drunk.
‘Change the phrase, because tomorrow is not going to be super.’
Pub landlord William Douglas told GMB today that he has chosen not to reopen Docks Beer in Grimsby amid concerns for health and safety.
Social media users tweeted that they will be keeping clear of pubs in England tomorrow
‘We’ve put a lot of thought into this, he said. ‘We feel now is not the right time for is. We’d like to avoid that first wave of enthusiasm as people return to the pubs on what is typically the busiest drinking day of the week.
‘Our first concern is the health and safety of our staff and customers.
‘We announced on social media a few days that we wouldn’t be reopening on July 4 and would be delaying reopening. We had hundreds of messages of support and no negative feedback, so we feel that decision is vindicated.
‘We are taking a “wait and see” approach. It will be later in July and possibly even in August. We are mindful of that spike in Leicester.
Tomorrow is expected to be a wash-out as pubs in England reopen after months of lockdown
‘We hear that Doncaster down the road, 53 miles down the road from us, is not far behind. This disease has not gone away.
More than 80% of Britons would strongly back second lockdown if coronavirus cases spike, new poll finds
By Jack Wright for MailOnline
More than 80 per cent of Britons would strongly back a second lockdown if Covid-19 cases spike, a new poll finds.
Over eight in 10 people said they would back lockdown if there were a second spike as most of the nation prepares to ease restrictions.
The YouGov/Sky poll found almost eight in 10 people (78 per cent) said they would self-isolate for 14 days if asked by an NHS test and trace app.
Almost 70 per cent said they would follow an instruction to self-isolate from a smartphone app.
Six per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds said they would oppose a second lockdown, compared with 4 per cent of those polled who were 65 and over.
The poll also reveals how nervous people remain about socialising and relaxing in lots of settings which are just about to open up.
70 per cent polled said they would be nervous about going to the pub and would not go to the cinema.
71 per cent would not go on public transport and 73 per cent are not comfortable going abroad.
60 per cent polled would not go to shopping centres and restaurants.
‘We’re one of the busiest pubs in North East Lincolnshire and when we do reopen it is absolutely essential that we do so with all the correct processes in place and we can manage what can be up to 400 people in this building – which is a challenge.’
Today, Mr Johnson will paint the easing as a means of supporting the livelihoods of bosses and their employees but warn ‘we are not out of the woods yet’.
‘They are our local restaurants, hairdressers, libraries, museums, cinemas, and yes, pubs.
‘They are also hotels, B&Bs, indeed much of our tourism industry,’ he will say, according to an extract released to the media ahead of the speech.
‘All these businesses and their workers have put in a heroic effort to prepare their venues for this reopening, to work out a way to trade in a way that keeps their customers safe.
‘But the success of these businesses, the livelihoods of those who rely on them, and ultimately the economic health of the whole country is dependent on every single one of us acting responsibly.
‘We must not let them down. The virus is still with us and the spike in Leicester has shown that. If it starts running out of control again the Government will not hesitate in putting on the brakes and re-imposing restrictions.
‘Anyone who flouts social distancing and Covid-secure rules is not only putting us all at risk but letting down those businesses and workers who have done so much to prepare for this new normal.’
The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said Mr Johnson’s message was that people should not ‘overdo it’.
Asked if Mr Johnson would be visiting a pub or restaurant tomorrow, the spokesman said: ‘He’s talked about his enthusiasm for a haircut and pint previously but I don’t know exactly what he’s doing on Saturday yet.’
The spokesman added that it would be ‘plain for all to see next week what he’s been doing at the weekend’ if he gets his blonde mop trimmed over the weekend.
It comes after the Treasury was forced to delete a tweet from its official account on Wednesday evening urging people to ‘grab a drink and raise a glass, pubs are reopening their doors from 4 July’.
A Treasury source said: ‘We got it wrong on this and the tweet was quickly removed.’