Commenting on the announcement by the Prime Minister on the further lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, subject to confirmation on 12th July, CAMRA’s National Chairman Nik Antona said:
“The easing of remaining restrictions in England will see the much-anticipated return of the authentic pub experience, with ordering and chatting at the bar replacing table service and the rule of six.
“This move will help to make sure that our beloved pubs, social clubs and taprooms can survive and thrive on the other side of the pandemic, and continue to play their vital role in our communities.
“Whilst the lifting of restrictions will be warmly welcomed by licensees, pub goers and the breweries that serve them – this isn’t ‘job done’.
“That is why CAMRA is calling on the Chancellor to back our campaign for a differential rate of duty on draught beer, which would level the playing field between the price of beer sold in social, community settings compared with supermarket alcohol consumed at home.
“We encourage everyone to support their local and enjoy a pint of fresh cask ale from a local brewery; however, the Government must also continue to provide support to our pubs to help them get back on their feet and thrive in the months and years ahead.”
Responding to the Health Secretary’s announcement that remaining COVID-19 restrictions will be lifted in England on 19th July, CAMRA Chief Executive Tom Stainer said:
“The lifting of these final restrictions is a huge step on the road to recovery for England’s pubs, social clubs and breweries. 19th July will be the opportunity for our pubs to be able to trade at full capacity, with table-service replaced by people ordering and chatting at the bar.
“Not only will this see the much-anticipated return of the traditional pub experience for customers, it will also help licencees make ends meet after a devastating 16 months.
“CAMRA will continue to campaign for the Government to continue to support pubs, including by changing the rate of duty charged on draught beer served in pubs to help them compete with supermarkets. Pubs are also in need of clarity from the Government as restrictions lift, namely on what is expected of businesses in continued contact tracing and checking COVID status, which we hope will be released in the coming days.
“We are calling on everyone to support their local pubs, social clubs and the great local breweries that serve them in the weeks and months ahead. As restrictions lift across the UK, we can help the Great British pub recover, thrive and cement their place at the heart of community life up and down the country.”
But it isn’t all over…
Whilst legal restrictions are lifted, government advice is to continue with caution. The younger bar staff are not fully vaccinated and the industry is being hit with staff shortages, a lot due to being asked to self isolate as a result of contact tracing. Many pubs are set to continue with some Covid safety measures for the short term. Pubs continue to need as much support as possible!